Strategies for Sustainable Business Logistics
Business School Coursework
Strategies for Sustainable Business Logistics
Refer to the Assignments tab for details.
In this item of assessment you are required to submit an individual report in which you evaluate specific aspects of an industry in depth, reporting on the level of sustainability seen in the present day and making recommendations for future improvements.
For the January 2022 instance of the module, the industry under study is the ready-made garment industry: you can select any part of the supply network that produces garments, or footwear, or materials such as the fibres are made into garments. Your work will be a 3,000 word report, submitted via Canvas. This assignment is worth 40% of the total grade for the module.
The ready-made garment industry forms an important part of the economy of some nations. It’s a vast, global undertaking… but its operation has accompanied by concerns and even scandals. From factory disasters and sweatshop conditions to forced labour where cotton is grown; from toxic emissions to the wasteful practices of retailers and consumers… our consumption of garments has a significant impact on society and the natural world.
There is a need for a better understanding of the impacts resulting from the production of garments. Only when this is done on the basis of evidence and good science can policymakers decide upon what parts of the industry to promote, develop and subsidise – and which to tax and discourage.
Your job, in this assignment, is to choose any one part of the supply network for garments and conduct a quantitative analysis, putting this a report to share your findings. For your quantitative analysis, select an appropriate methodology such as measuring the water footprint, measuring the carbon footprint, etc. It is a key requirement of this assignment that you present original work in which you make calculations on the basis of evidence.
Additional Guidance:The garment industry as a whole is far too complex for meaningful analysis. Instead, you should focus your attention upon a single facet of the industry where you can offer insights. For example, you might choose to report on the production of fibres, on logistics operations, tanning or dyeing etc. …any aspect you like! Discuss your choice with your tutor if in doubt.
The aim is to produce a worked example, using reasonable assumptions, to assess the environmental harm arising from the production (or harvesting, or processing) of the item(s) you have chosen. This may be a calculation of contrbution to climate change, or some other quantifiable mode of harm such as water use, worker safety, toxic emissions etc.
You should provide an overview of the organisations (or types of organisation) that work in the supply network for your chosen item, define appropriate boundaries for your study and discuss the practices that take place, presenting evidence and reasoning such that you quantify the impacts of supply chain activities.
Conduct original analysis using appropriate tools and methodologies. You might, for example, apply a life cycle assessment methodology such as PAS2050, using published conversion factors as a basis for your calculations, e.g. estimating carbon footprint based on the weight of an item, the distance and the modes of transport employed. Use the academic literature to find additional evidence of quantified economic, environmental and/or social harm.
Having reported this information, propose and justify a new strategy for the supply network: ideally a creative solution that changes such factors as the business model, the configuration of the supply network or the specification of key products of services. Cite the sources that gave you information about the sector as a whole, and about your chosen commodity. Use evidence to construct reasoned arguments that lead to workable solutions.
A good piece of work will be attractively styled and logically structured, with a good standard of written English. If you are in any doubt about your writing skills, please take advice from the Skills TeamLinks to an external site..
Do not cut and paste phrases or paragraphs from published sources without citing your sources. You should seek to use your own words to explain concepts and theories, while acknowledging the work of other scholars.
A recommended structure for your report follows. You can depart from these recommendations if you wish, but be sure to structure your report logically, and to cover all requested elements. Use numbered sections, with decimals for subsections.
Ideally, your report will include the following:
Module Learning Outcomes and Grading Descriptors Guidance
Addressing Module Learning Outcomes 3 & 4
This assignment tests whether you have achieved the learning outcomes of the module:
|LO3||Systematically make informed judgements about how legislation and management practices can limit the economic and social impact of logistics operations.|
|LO4||Critically evaluate the sustainability of selected logistics operations from contemporary case studies and also through personal reflection.|
Grading Descriptors Guidance
|Module Learning Outcomes 3 & 4||Weighting|
|Introductory remarks, identifying the scope of your review and briefly justifying it as a topic of interest.||10/100|
|Description of the extended supply network for the selected material or component(s) – including quality of evidence found on sources, practices and issues being discussed in the literature.||20/100|
|Quantified evaluation of economic/environmental/social impacts arising from the use of the selected material or component(s).||25/100|
|Interpretation of results obtained, and quality of recommendations for new operational procedures, policies and legislation||20/100|
|Quality of the report in terms of structure, academic tone and clarity with which impacts are communicated.||15/100|
|Use of academic sources (particularly journal and conference papers) to support reasoning – and quality of Harvard referencing technique employed.||10/100|
|Total||100 marks available|
Please refer to the Course Hub to interpret your grade on any item of assessment. Please note that all grades are provisional until approved by the University’s module board process, which sees work examined by a moderator and and external moderator, before your final grade appears on your transcript of results.
In addition to viewing your grade for a piece of work, please also review the comments that the marking tutors have added to the document itself. Within the module, open the document that you submitted in order to see tutor comments.
Academic Regulations, Marking and Assessment
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Marking and Assessment
Please refer to University policy regarding overlength assignments in the Academic Regulation section of the Student Hub.