Capturing cross-border logistics for analysis and improvement

Publication Name

Journal of Global Operations and Strategic Sourcing


Purpose: Achieving swift and even flow of cargo through the border, the ultimate objective of cross-border logistics (CBL) requires the close coordination and collaboration of a multitude of stakeholders, as well as optimally configured systems. To achieve and sustain competitiveness in a dynamic international trade environment, CBL processes must undergo periodic analysis, improvement and optimization. This study aims to develop a modelling framework to capture CBL processes for analysis and improvement. Design/methodology/approach: Relying on the extant literature, a meta-model is developed incorporating significant perspectives required to model CBL processes. Popular process modelling notations are evaluated against the meta-model and their ease of comprehension is also evaluated. The selected notation through evalution is augmented with addendums for a comprehensive depiction of CBL processes. Findings: The capacity of role activity diagrams (RADs) to depict all perspectives, including interactions in a single diagram, makes them particularly suitable for modelling CBL processes. RADs have been complemented with physical flow diagrams and methods to capture temporal dimension, enabling a comprehensive view of CBL processes laying the foundation for insightful analysis. Research limitations/implications: The meta-model developed in this paper paves the way to develop an analysis framework which requires further research. Originality/value: The lack of well-accepted modelling notations for studying CBL processes prompts researchers to search and adapt different formalisms. This study has filled this gap by proposing a comprehensive modelling framework able to capture CBL processes at different granularities in rich detail. Not only does the developed meta-model aid in selecting the notation, it is also useful in analysing the constituent elements of CBL processes.

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