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The Supply Chain of PPEs during the Covid-19 pandemic: A focus on the Italian and the French situation

Giulia Caggia

The Supply Chain of PPEs during the Covid-19 pandemic: A focus on the Italian and the French situation.

Rel. Anna Corinna Cagliano, Julien Fondrevelle. Politecnico di Torino, Corso di laurea magistrale in Ingegneria Gestionale, 2023

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Global supply chains have been seriously affected by the spread of the Covid-19. Among the others, the pandemic had a particularly large influence on the supply chain of PPE, the personal protective equipment. In fact, it caused severe disruption and supply shortages, as well as a massive spike in demand for such products. Since the beginning of the pandemic, literature has studied the phenomenon and explained the logistics changes that the supply chain has encountered and how it has adapted to overcome its limitations. However, the majority of studies focus on the early stages of the pandemic, limited to the 2020 and the 2021, and do not provide a comparison between different countries. The aim of this work is to address these gaps by attempting to explore what changed after 2021, in 2022, and how it differs from the previous periods, by focusing on the Italian and French situations. In fact, these two countries were among the first in Europe to see the Covid-19 virus spread and, by consequence, to face the PPE supply shortages and the supply chain’s disruption. The first step was to analyze the literature by a method called “Systematic Literature Review” (SLR). The analysis allowed to identify some logistics factors considered the most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic by the articles’ authors and to find the main strategies implemented by the companies to face the critical situation. The findings of the SLR were used to construct a questionnaire. The survey was administered to a total of 314 companies, 174 Italian and 140 French, selected among the PPE producers, wholesalers, and distributors. The results of the survey were then studied by applying descriptive statistics and Kruskall-Wallis tests (KW). The tests revealed some differences in the two countries’ habits: an example is the implementation of the strategies to face the pandemic that in Italy are still used, according to its more conservative mentality, while France quickly abandoned them. As an example, the stock visibility level in the company’s business in Italy is increasing, while in France its decreasing or remaining constant. France generally shows a more dynamic behavior to the changes of the environment than Italy that is still applying some prudential policies. However, it is clear from the results that both countries are experiencing a general decline in their PPE businesses as these products are no longer needed among the public. This work has important academic and practical implication. It enlarges the literature knowledge about the effect of the pandemic on the supply chain in the last phases of it and open to several questions about the future of it: how will the supply chain readapt to the new situation? Will it return to the past or find a new equilibrium point? Future research could try to collect new data from PPE companies in other countries, culturally and geographically distant from Italy and France in order to identify some typical patterns across the globe and the eventual differences. Furthermore, it would be interesting to add to the analysis other supply chain’s stages – such as the retailers – and study the changes they experienced and how they reacted.

Relators: Anna Corinna Cagliano, Julien Fondrevelle
Academic year: 2022/23
Publication type: Electronic
Number of Pages: 113
Corso di laurea: Corso di laurea magistrale in Ingegneria Gestionale
Classe di laurea: New organization > Master science > LM-31 - MANAGEMENT ENGINEERING
Ente in cotutela: Institut National des Sciences Appliquees de Lyon - INSA (FRANCIA)
Aziende collaboratrici: INSA DE LYON
URI: http://webthesis.biblio.polito.it/id/eprint/27440
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