Even When Plans Are Useless, Planning Is Indispensable

May 29, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi speaks with CIO Journal and Wall Street Journal.

“Given these constraints,” wrote MIT professor Yossi Sheffi, “the words of General Dwight Eisenhower ring true: Plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.” 

Get Over It! - Why There Is No Going Back To Normal After COVID-19

May 29, 2020 • Blogs

Joseph Coughlin writes: Everyone wants an answer to one question — and they want it now. When do we get back to normal? It has been three months. Politicians and pundits argue. Experts debate. Still no answer. Everyone wants an answer to one question — and they want it now. When do we get back to normal? It has been three months. Politicians and pundits argue. Experts debate. Still no answer. Get over it. There is no getting back to normal. There is only a new normal — one that has been coming long before COVID-19.

Who Gets What When Supply Chains Are Disrupted?

May 27, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi writes: When companies cannot meet the full demands of their customers, leaders need to set clear decision criteria and the mechanisms to back them up. The COVID-19 pandemic has upended normal life and many supply chains. Between hoarding (such as toilet paper), unexpected demand surges (such as yeast, for baking), and spot supply shortages (because of factories or warehouses closed due to infection or mandate), some products are in short supply.

Coronavirus: Why are basic necessities getting more expensive?

May 13, 2020 • In the Media

Christopher Mejía Argueta speaks with Univison about the current state of the food and grocery supply chains. Watch below (in Spanish):

How COVID-19 Complicates Farm to Table

May 13, 2020 • In the Media

When the coronavirus began to spread, it was common for grocery stores to limit toilet paper to one package per customer. Now some stores are placing caps on packages of beef, pork, and chicken. Yossi Sheffi, director of the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics, talks to host Krys Boyd [of NPR's Think podcast] about how COVID-19 is impacting the U.S. food supply chain and what that means for your family’s shopping list.

S&OP: A new frontier for supply chain resilience?

May 13, 2020 • In the Media

Kai Trepte, Jim Rice, and Walid Klibi discuss how sales and operations planning can be adapted to be more resilient in the face of disruption:

Most sales and operations planning (S&OP) processes do a good job of increasing supply chain efficiencies and reducing costs. But they often don't handle major disruptions well. Here's how to make the process more resilient.

They Will Be the Unsung Heroes of COVID-19

May 13, 2020 • In the Media

Joseph F. Coughlin writes: COVID-19 is shaping Gen Z's attitudes toward all institutions, government, employers, experts & brands. The contagion is also forging Gen Z's view of traditions, having children, retirement even globalization. COVID-19's impact isn't in a year or two, it will be in decades, and Gen Z is its vector. My daughter stares into the screen. This is not just another TikTok moment. She is in her high school English class; this is education, COVID-19 style.

Domestic Labor Issues Pose Hidden Supply Chain Risks

May 07, 2020 • Blogs

Alexis Bateman and Ken Cottrill write,

Companies have long known that visibility into the workplace practices of far-flung offshore suppliers is an essential component of supply chain risk management. Many enterprises lack that visibility, even though it is becoming increasingly important across global supply chains. The COVID-19 crisis is now making it clear that workplace conditions closer to home may need to come under similar scrutiny.

MIT CTL Responds to Uncertainty in Supply Chains caused by COVID 19

May 07, 2020 • News

Given recent supply chain implications of the coronavirus outbreak, MIT CTL faculty and researchers have responded with observations and advice for companies. Through academic publications, articles, news commentary, webinars, and various other media, the Center strives to stay alert to late-breaking developments and serve as a resource for deeper discussion.

Don't Panic. We're Not Running Out of Food

May 04, 2020 • In the Media

Christopher Mejía Argueta and Alexis Bateman are quoted in Vice. “The empty shelves will continue for a while. said Christopher Mejía Argueta, a research scientist at the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics. But if I have someone in front of me who is going to start panicking about the empty shelves, what I would tell that person is, 'you don't need to worry.

The SUVs and Trucks We Love Are Killing People

May 04, 2020 • In the Media

The driver of that Grand Cherokee may have run the red light for any number of reasons: he was late, reckless, or maybe even malicious. But more likely, he simply didn’t notice.

“We are less situationally aware as a society than perhaps we’ve ever been,” says Bryan Reimer, associate director of MIT’s New England University Transportation Center, where he studies driver safety, among other topics. Distracted driving is nothing new, of course. But distraction today is different from the absentminded daydreaming of the pre-smartphone era." 

Yes, There Is Less Meat In Grocery Stores Because Of The Coronavirus. Yes, You're Going To Pay More

May 01, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi, director of [the Center for Transportation & Logistics] at MIT, believes the U.S. food supply system has performed “miraculously” during the pandemic.

"You may not be able to get the cut you like … so you’ll get a different cut," says Sheffi. "Let me be clear, there are spot shortages here and there. What the supply chains (are) experiencing are unprecedented changes in demand."

COVID-19 - Selected responses by MIT CTL

April 28, 2020 • News
Given recent supply chain implications of the Coronavirus outbreak, MIT CTL researchers have responded with observations and advice for companies.

How will coronavirus change the way we shop? Here are 10 predictions about the future of retail

April 26, 2020 • In the Media

Alexis Bateman, director of the MIT Sustainable Supply Chains program, said

"Empty shelves in supermarkets have pushed consumers to look locally for their food — as evidenced by a surge in community-supported agriculture. It’s a clear opportunity for consumers ‘to double down on farmers' markets and locally produced food." 

The Week Oil Went Negative

April 24, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi, professor of engineering systems and director of the Center for Transportation at MIT, discussed the impact on the oil market’s supply chain. Listen to the podcast at the title link.

COVID-19 Now We All Know What It’s Like To Be Old & Alone

April 23, 2020 • In the Media

Dr. Joseph Coughlin writes: In the span of a few short days, millions of Americans of all ages have gone from our often-harried daily routines to living and working at home. Many of us are experiencing this change not as a liberating day off or a snow day, but as an anxiety-producing semi- or full-isolation.

Coronavirus Reveals Vulnerable Supply Chains

April 22, 2020 • In the Media

MIT Professor Yossi Sheffi speaks with Bloomberg's Scarlet Fu and Romaine Bostick on the collapse of the food supply chain and the crash in oil. 

Reinforcing Supply Networks

April 22, 2020 • In the Media

Jim Rice writes in Inside Story: The question at hand for most organizations now is how to restart, to reconstitute your operations back towards what will surely be a new normal.  If your company is working as part of a critical network to satisfy heightened demand for PPE, food, medical, sanitizing suppliers – your challenge is different than those firms operating at significantly reduced capacity.

The biggest myth about self-driving cars: That humans can sit back and enjoy the ride

April 21, 2020 • In the Media

Bryan Reimer quoted in Fast Company

The hype about autonomous vehicles misses one key point: Humans will still be vitally necessary for a very long time. “The biggest myth about automation is the more automation, the less you need human expertise. Actually, the more you automate, the more you need to educate, where, when, how etc.,” observes Bryan Reimer, PhD, a research scientist at MIT’s Center for Transportation and Logistics, a researcher in the AgeLab, and associate director of the New England University Transportation Center.

The US won’t run out of food during the coronavirus pandemic

April 18, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi is quoted in Vox

“We admire the way that the system works,” Yossi Sheffi, a supply chain expert and the director of MIT’s Center for Transportation and Logistics, told Vox. “The virus is still moving from state to state and it’s not uniform all over the country, so the demand patterns are changing all the time. But at the end of the day, we don’t see it as a real danger that we will run out of food.”

No, we’re not running out of food. It just looks that way.

April 16, 2020 • In the Media

Chris Mejía, Director of the Food and Retail Operations Lab (FaROL), shares some good news: "I am very certain we are not going to run out of food."

“I think we’re overreacting,” says Chris Mejia-Argueta, director of the Food and Retail Operations Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, referring to reports of disruptions to the food industry. “I am very certain we’re not going to run out of food.”

The growing push to re-open the U.S. economy

April 15, 2020 • In the Media

CGTN's Roee Ruttenberg spoke with Yossi Sheffi, professor at MIT and director of the Center for Transportation & Logistics, about reopening the U.S. economy.

How the coronavirus outbreak could hurt global business

April 14, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi joins CNBC's “Squawk Alley” to discuss how the coronavirus outbreak could hurt global business.

Commentary: Solving the Health-Care Equipment Supply Shortage

April 10, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi writes: Just-in-time principles have hampered hospitals responding to the coronavirus pandemic, and it will take government action to fix the problem over the long term. As we struggle to come to terms with the scale of the Covid-19 pandemic, one of the most frustrating sights is witnessing front-line health-care workers begging for more masks, protective gowns, testing kits, ventilators, and intensive-care beds. The woeful performance of these health-care supply chains raises the question of how such glaring shortages happened.

Coronavirus will change how stuff gets to you

April 10, 2020 • In the Media

Yossi Sheffi spoke with Yahoo! Finance about how the just-in-time model and supplier diversification in light of the coronavirus: “For many companies, changing the entire model just doesn’t make sense. As Yossi Sheffi, director of the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics, told Yahoo Finance, there are just too many advantages of “just-in-time” that go beyond cost. There are more speed and agility, but also more quality.