Discover how emerging innovations intersect with supply chain management. Since 2014, Crossroads has been offering a unique learning opportunity for participants by connecting experts from MIT, the world’s foremost center for technological innovation, with the foremost business & management industry leaders, and researchers from the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics (MIT CTL), the global leader in supply chain education and research.

No other event provides this blend of expertise in one day. "Crossroads has become the industry’s most compelling forum for the ideas that will shape tomorrow's supply chains," says Yossi Sheffi, Elisha Gray II Professor of Engineering Systems at MIT and Director of MIT CTL.

Registration is now closed for Crossroads 2024. Our spring 2025 event will open for registration later in the year. Learn more about becoming a Supply Chain Exchange Partner to be the first to know about all future CTL events.

Following is a selection of topics shared during previous years.

How Will AI Impact Our Jobs and Work? - Crossroads 2024

Discover how emerging innovations intersect with supply chain management. Since 2014, Crossroads has been offering a unique learning opportunity for participants by connecting experts from MIT, the world’s foremost center for technological innovation, with the foremost business & management industry leaders, and researchers from the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics, the global leader in supply chain education and research.

  • Dr. Ben Armstrong, Executive Director, Industrial Performance Center, and Co-Lead, Work of the Future Initiative
  • Dr. Dave Correll, Co-Director, MIT CTL FreightLab
  • Bill Driegert, Executive Vice President, Flexport
  • Samir Gami, Senior Director, Advanced Customer Capabilities, Supply Chain, Johnson & Johnson's Innovative Medicine
  • Dr. Eva Ponce, Executive Director, MITx MicroMasters in Supply Chain Management, and Director, Omnichannel Supply Chain Lab
  • Dr. Maria Jesus Saenz, Executive Director, MIT SCM Masters Programs, and Director, MIT Digital Supply Chain Transformation
  • Stephanie Simon, Head of Mergers and Acquisition Integration Management, Maersk
  • Professor Yossi Sheffi, Director, MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics
  • Dr. Matthias Winkenbach, Director, MIT CTL Megacity Logistics Lab

CTL@50 presents Crossroads 2023: A View of the Future from Leadership

As we marked the 50th anniversary of the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics, the milestone led us to ponder over the evolution of the supply chain and logistics field—after all, the term “supply chain” itself is only 40 years old. Crossroads 2023 consisted of a series of informal, intimate discussions with leaders from at the fore of industry: leading shippers, carriers, tech companies, consumer products firms, and contract manufacturers. Each discussion focused on understanding the current supply chain climate and dynamics, but with a look to the future and exploration into leading-edge innovations in the field as well as what today’s supply chain professionals need to plan and prepare for in the future.

  • Jon Moeller – CEO, The Procter & Gamble Company
  • Professor Yossi Sheffi – Director, MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics
  • Shelley Simpson – President, J.B. Hunt
  • Meri Stevens – Worldwide Vice President, Consumer Health Supply Chain, Johnson & Johnson
  • Lynn Torrel – Chief Procurement & Supply Chain Officer, Flex
  • Dr. Raquel Urtasun – Founder and CEO, Waabi

The New Competitive Edge: Supply Chain Design for Value Creation - Crossroads 2022

Our world has become much more complex since supply chain design conventions were established from research carried out in the 1990s. The competitive environment in which firms operate experiences more volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity—such that it has even become its own acronym: VUCA. With technological advances over the last two decades enabling incredibly detailed data visibility, the conventional approach to network design—focusing only on cost minimization—is now only one of many approaches. What does it take for companies to thrive in today's VUCA environment, exploring new considerations for supply chain design that companies need to maintain a competitive advantage, when aspects like resilience, demand uncertainty, and green logistics become a vital part of the supply chain design process?

  • Adrienne Palermo, Senior Director, NA Oral Care Supply Network Operations, P&G
  • Jarrod Goentzel, Director, Humanitarian Supply Chain Lab, MIT CTL
  • Milena Janjevic, Research Scientist, MIT CTL
  • Edgar Gutiérrez-Franco, Postdoctoral Associate, MIT CTL

The Changing World of Work - Crossroads 2021

The labor shortages that are disrupting supply chains are part of a wider set of work-related challenges that include demographic shifts, the impact of automation, and AI-driven changes to job specs. In this rapidly changing employment landscape, leaders must find ways to ensure that their organizations can recruit and retain the workforces they need to stay competitive over the next decade.

  • Dr. Joe Coughlin, Director Age Lab, MIT CTL  |  Current labor situation and demographic challenges
  • Prof. Daron Acemoglu, MIT Department of Economics  |  The use of automation in the workplace
  • Dr. Elisabeth Reynolds, National Economic Council, Executive Director -MIT Industrial Performance Center (on leave)  |  Work of the future
  • Prof. Julie Shah, MIT Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics  |  Application of collaborative robots in the workplace
  • Dr. Donald Sull, MIT Sloan School of Management  |  The use of AI in developing the workforce to meet the demands anticipated in the future

Understanding Uncertain Futures - Crossroads 2020

The year 2020 was less than a month old when the coronavirus outbreak erupted in China. The crisis provides a stark reminder of the uncertainties that supply chains face today – and throughout the new decade. The Crossroads 2020 one-day conference explored these uncertainties, as well as measures that companies can take to prepare for them.

  • Prof. Yasheng Huang, MIT Sloan School of Management | China and the global economy
  • Prof. Tim Swager, MIT Department of Chemistry | Sensor Innovations
  • Prof. Muriel Médard, MIT Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science | The Future of 5G
  • Dr. Alexis Bateman, MIT CTL; Dr. Donna Palumbo-Miele, Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals | Sustainable Supply Chains Research Briefing
  • Prof. Wojciech Matusik, MIT Computer Science and AI Laboratory (CSAIL) | Advances in Additive Manufacturing
  • Prof. Yossi Sheffi and CTL Research Team, MIT CTL | Uncertainty & Resilience: Responding to Coronavirus and Other Disruptions

Enabling New Supply Chain Designs - Crossroads 2019

Discovering how emerging innovations intersect with supply chain management. Topics: Digital Disruption, New Materials, Artificial Intelligence, Visual Analytics.

  • Dr. Stephanie Woerner – CISR | Digital Disruption
  • Michael Schrage – MIT Center for Digital Business | Innovationx
  • Dr. Kalyan Veeramachaneni – MIT Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (LIDS) | Machine Learning
  • Prof. Cem Tasan – MIT Department of Material Science and Engineering
  • Dr. Matthias Winkenbach – MIT CTL |  Visual Analytics
  • Dave Anderson – Supply Chain Ventures
  • Tony Grichnik – Brunel University
  • Luis Nava – Converse
  • Jason Schenker – The Futurist Institute

Autonomy and Artificial Intelligence Crossroads 2018

New advances in artificial intelligence, the impact of self-drive vehicle technology and its evolution over the coming years, the policy and legal ramifications of autonomous vehicles, and the implications conversational commerce has on business operations are some of the developments that supply chain professionals will learn about at Crossroads 2018.

  • Artificial Intelligence and How Technology Will Evolve - Adam Fisch, MIT Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
  • The Road Ahead for Autonomous Vehicles - Prof. John Leonard, MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab
  • Time to Talk About Conversational Commerce - Prof. Brian Subirana, MIT Auto-ID Laboratory
  • What About the Legal and Policy Implications of Vehicle Autonomy - Prof. Daniel Weitzner, MIT Internet Policy Research Initiative, CSAIL

Digital Disruptions and Future Potentials - Crossroads 2017

The six presenters at the 2017 CTL Crossroads conference came from markedly different parts of MIT – studying business, economics, computer science, chemistry, and civil, mechanical, and electrical engineering – but their talks shared common themes connected to supply chains. 

  • Turning Digital Disruption into Competitive Advantage - Dr. Jeanne Ross, Principal Research Scientist, MIT Sloan School of Management
  • Additive Manufacturing: Current Status and Future Potential - John Hart, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at MIT
  • Visual Analytics: The Answer to Data Overload? - Dr. Matthias Winkenbach, Director Megacities Logistics Lab at MIT

Globalization, Autonomy, and Education - Crossroads 2016

The impact of autonomous vehicles on logistics operations, new research on the security of food supply chains, and the latest developments from the cutting edge of online education are some of the topics that will be covered at Crossroads 2016.

  • A new generation of autonomous vehicles - Sertac Karaman, Assistant Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics, MIT  
  • Global food supply chains risk priorities - Retsef Levi, Professor of Management, Professor of Operations Management, MIT
  • Transforming Professional Education: An Update from the Front Line - Dr. Chris Caplice, Executive Director MIT CTL

To receive early invitations and full reports from Crossroads learn about becoming an MIT CTL partner.