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Buttressing Supply Chains Against Floods in Asia for Humanitarian Relief and Economic Recovery

2013 — By Man Mohan S. Sodhi, Christopher S. Tang

Floods are the most frequent category of disasters worldwide. Among all geographical regions, Asia has suffered the most. While there are several ongoing humanitarian efforts and initiatives, we believe there is a new opportunity to coordinate “last mile” humanitarian efforts in the event of a flood using micro-retailers.

Because micro-retailers are the ‘last mile’ nodes in traditional retail supply chains in many Asian countries, we propose the use of social enterprise to buttress these supply chains for distribution of essential goods by coordinating with micro-retailers before and after floods. We also present a stylized model to quantify the benefits of doing so.