Blockchain Integration in the Context of Supply Chain Management

Blockchain is a “system used to make a digital record of all the occasions a cryptocurrency is bought or sold, and that is constantly growing as more blocks are added” (Cambridge Dictionary). The usage of the Blockchain technology goes beyond crypto currencies: In recent years Blockchain has become a subject of research and practice in different sectors ranging from finance (Xu et al. 2019), over health care (Hasselgren et al. 2019) to supply chain management (SCM). Here, it finds potential use in a variety of areas including food supply chains (Astill et al. 2019), coldchains (Galvez et al. 2018), logistics (Hackius and Petersen 2017) or sustainable supply chain management (Saberi et al. 2019,). In the context of the Internet of Things, Blockchain offers opportunities for Digital Supply Chains by supporting the integration of business partners (Viriyasitavat et al. 2019) and cybersecurity (Taylor et al. 2019). Also, Blockchain application might solve some of the challenges of Big Data (Karafiloski and Mishev 2017).

The thesis revolves around the application of the blockchain technology in supply chain management. The various benefits and challenges of blockchain-usage in the supply chain context are to be researched and their potential evaluated. Further attention should be given to the reasons for and against adopting the technology, how the choice can be made, as well as the how Blockchain integration can be performed and the requirements for it. Given the wide variety of potential application areas and the existence of several review articles surrounding Blockchain, a tertiary research might be suitable. In particular, the Digital Supply Chain concepts revolving around the Internet of Things, Industrial Data Space and Cyber-Physical Systems should be considered.

Starting Literature:

  • Casino, F., Dasaklis, T.K., Patsakis, C., 2019. A systematic literature review of blockchain-based applications: Current status, classification and open issues. Telematics and Informatics 36, 55–81.
  • Dobrovnik, M., Herold, D.M., Fürst, E., Kummer, S., 2018.  Blockchain for and in Logistics: What to Adopt and Where to Start. Logistics 2, 18.
  • Karafiloski, E., Mishev, A., 2017. Blockchain solutions for big data challenges: A literature review, in: IEEE EUROCON 2017 -17th International Conference on Smart Technologies. Presented at the IEEE EUROCON 2017 -17th International Conference on Smart Technologies, pp. 763–768.
  • Kshetri, N., 2018. 1 Blockchain’s roles in meeting key supply chain management objectives. International Journal of Information Management 39, 80–89.
  • Taylor, P.J., Dargahi, T., Dehghantanha, A., Parizi, R.M., Choo, K.-K.R., 2019.  When blockchain meets Internet of Things: Characteristics, challenges, and business opportunities. Journal of Industrial Information Integration 15, 21–28.
  • Viriyasitavat, W., Anuphaptrirong, T., Hoonsopon, D., 2019. When blockchain meets Internet of Things: Characteristics, challenges, and business opportunities. Journal of Industrial Information Integration 15, 21–28.
  • Wang, Y., Han, J.H., Beynon-Davies, P., 2018. Understanding blockchain technology for future supply chains: a systematic literature review and research agenda. Supply Chain Management: An International Journal.

Other sources mentioned above:

  • Astill, J., Dara, R.A., Campbell, M., Farber, J.M., Fraser, E.D.G., Sharif, S., Yada, R.Y., 2019. Transparency in food supply chains: A review of enabling technology solutions. Trends in Food Science & Technology 91, 240–247.
  • Galvez, J.F., Mejuto, J.C., Simal-Gandara, J., 2018. Future challenges on the use of blockchain for food traceability analysis. TrAC Trends in Analytical Chemistry 107, 222–232.
  • Hackius, N., Petersen, M., 2017. Blockchain in logistics and supply chain : trick or treat?, in: Proceedings of the Hamburg International Conference of Logistics (HICL). Presented at the Hamburg International Conference of Logistics (HICL) 2017, epubli, pp. 3–18.
  • Hasselgren, A., Kralevska, K., Gligoroski, D., Pedersen, S.A., Faxvaag, A., 2019. Blockchain in healthcare and health sciences – a scoping review. International Journal of Medical Informatics 104040.
  • Saberi, S., Kouhizadeh, M., Sarkis, J., Shen, L., 2019. Blockchain technology and its relationships to sustainable supply chain management. International Journal of Production Research 57, 2117–2135.
  • Xu, M., Chen, X., Kou, G., 2019. . A systematic review of blockchain. Financial Innovation 5, 27.