Exploring Implications of Continuous Manufacturing within the Pharmaceutical Sector through Industrial Landscape Mapping and Cross-Sector Analysis

Tomás Seosamh Harrington (Lead Author), Leila Alinaghian, Jagjit Singh Srai

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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On-going new technology development in Continuous Manufacturing (CM) has enabled potential for significant step changes within the Pharmaceutical sector e.g. shifting from ‘batch’ to ‘continuous’ processing has implications for (a) product variety, consistency and functionality (b) energy and resource efficiency (c) inventory and customization options and (d) overall industry structure. However, current adoption rates of CM remain in the range of 5%. This research looks to explore and address the operations and supply chain management challenges associated with CM, specifically through learning from other industrial systems.

Research question(s): Emerging research questions include (a) what are the architectural differences between current (batch) and future (continuous) manufacturing operations and (b) associated implications for up-stream and down-stream supply chain configurations, structures, processes and systems.
Methods: An Industrial landscape mapping methodology was developed (integrating value chain analysis with supply network configuration mapping) that is applicable to a broader industrial systems context. The pharmaceutical sector was mapped to provide the basis for (a) exploring alternative product-process supply network options and value chain implications of a shift to CM and (b) cross-sector analysis involving six previous case studies (i.e. six industrial systems that have exhibited different types of disruptive innovation).

Key findings: This research provides a basis for understanding (a) current and future supply network configurations (b) critical interconnections between industry actors and (c) the overall industry structure. Preliminary cross-case analysis suggests several generic aspects to supply networks, including the blurring of industry boundaries, and the critical requirement to manage uncertainty in selective elements of the value chain.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIndustry Studies Association conference
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventIndustry Studies Association conference - Kansas City, United States
Duration: 28 May 201331 May 2013


ConferenceIndustry Studies Association conference
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityKansas City

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