Sustainable supply chain management in the digitalisation era: The impact of Automated Guided Vehicles Academic Article uri icon


  • 2016 Elsevier Ltd Internationalization of markets and climate change introduce multifaceted challenges for modern supply chain (SC) management in the today's digitalisation era. On the other hand, Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV) systems have reached an age of maturity that allows for their utilization towards tackling dynamic market conditions and aligning SC management focus with sustainability considerations. However, extant research only myopically tackles the sustainability potential of AGVs, focusing more on addressing network optimization problems and less on developing integrated and systematic methodological approaches for promoting economic, environmental and social sustainability. To that end, the present study provides a critical taxonomy of key decisions for facilitating the adoption of AGV systems into SC design and planning, as these are mapped on the relevant strategic, tactical and operational levels of the natural hierarchy. We then propose the Sustainable Supply Chain Cube (S2C2), a conceptual tool that integrates sustainable SC management with the proposed hierarchical decision-making framework for AGVs. Market opportunities and the potential of integrating AGVs into a SC context with the use of the S2C2 tool are further discussed.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Bechtsis, D., Tsolakis, N., Vlachos, D., & Iakovou, E.

citation count

  • 126

complete list of authors

  • Bechtsis, Dimitrios||Tsolakis, Naoum||Vlachos, Dimitrios||Iakovou, Eleftherios

publication date

  • January 2017