There is no doubt, according to recent sound research evidence, that organizations must believe in constant improvement and constant change, and need to gain a clear perspective on how to approach the changing landscape and to organize for innovation, developing talent and skills, building on strengths, digitizing their core businesses and innovating with new digital ones, evaluating new technologies and digital advances, while better understanding the link between creative destruction, disruptive innovation, digital disruption, digital transformation, and delivering the change through an ecosystem of partners at the confluence between Supply Chain Management and Demand Chain Management, trying to go beyond visibility, to a Digital Supply Chain that detects and responds to changes, benefitting from new waves of innovation in Machine Learning, Internet of Things (IoT) and Blockchain etc., while considering the convergence of Digital & Marketing, followed by better increasingly seamless Digital Brand Experiences.
The Academic & Business Partnership 2017 SCM 4 ECR Conference, 19-21 October, Târgovişte, Romania – with the theme “Physical Internet and New Challenges in Supply Chain Management: Rethinking the Supply Chain 4.0 for Consumer Value” – was organized by the SCM-ECR Laboratory, The Faculty of Economic Sciences, Valahia University of Târgovişte – in collaboration with The Consumer Goods Forum’s (CGF – the Global Network Serving Shopper & Consumer Needs) E2E Value Chain & Standards Pillar, Paris, Czestochowa University of Technology (Poland), Romanian Logistics Association – ARILOG, Romanian-American University (Faculty of Management-Marketing), University Politehnica of Bucharest (Faculty of Transports), Bucharest University of Economic Studies (Faculty of Business and Tourism), University of Piteşti (Faculty of Mechanics and Technology), and Petroleum-Gas University of Ploiesti (UPG, Faculty of Economic Sciences).
This year’s SCM 4 ECR Conference was attended by the globally recognised Keynote Speaker Ruediger Hagedorn –Senior Manager, Collaborative Value Chain Initiatives & Projects, The Consumer Goods Forum, Paris – who delivered again a high-profile talk of real interest to everyone, reconfirming his usual aplomb and consciousness while revealing experience, expertise and wisdom. Another special guest was Dr. Gerd Wolfram, (Founder of) IOT Innovation & Consult – Germany. For example, he contributed to the prestigious book “Retailing in the 21st Century. Current and Future Trends ”, Springer Berlin • Heidelberg 2006, Editors: Prof. Dr. Manfred Krafft (University of Muenster, Institute of Marketing) and Prof. Murali K. Mantrala, PhD, University of Missouri – Columbia. At that time he was Managing Director of MGI Metro Group Information Technology GmbH, being: responsible for innovation and advanced technologies, and also for the corporate IT strategy within the Metro Group, one hand; and on the other hand, Executive Project Manager of the Metro Group Future Store Initiative; Co-chair of standardization working groups in EPC global, GCI and GS1 Germany. After that, he was Senior Vice President and Head of Systems and Solutions at SMARTRAC Technology Group. Recently he participated in the QVC-study “shopping 2036 (2)” as expert (https://zukunftdeseinkaufens.com/shopping-2036-2-shopping-between-individualization-fragmentation/ ), and he was moderator at POPAI Forum, March 7, 2017 (at EuroShop, The World’s No. 1 Retail Trade Fair), while on March 8, 2017 he approached the challenging topic “Future Shopping 2030+” at the same Forum. EuroShop (held 16th-20th February in Düsseldorf, Germany) was also attended by Ruediger Hagedorn, who presented the CGF’s work on the Future Value Network to attending delegates and joined the (above mentioned Forum) POPAI D-A-CH Awards jury (http://www.theconsumergoodsforum.com/e2e-value-chain-news/955-q1-2017-update-ruediger-hagedorn-attends-euroshop-2017 ). It is also worth mentioning within this context that RAU Professor Theodor Purcarea joined EuroShop 2011 following the invitation of Prof. Dr. Bernd Hallier as Chairman of the Advisory Board of EuroShop, and EHI Retail Institute’s Managing Director (https://www.crd-aida.ro/2011/03/the-european-retail-academy-met-for-its-annual-meeting-2011-at-the-ehi-retail-institute-gs1-germany-and-the-world-leading-exhibition-for-retail-technology-euroshop-main-special-issue-for-era-was-lif-2/ ).
The wonderful 2017 SCM 4 ECR Conference addressed a number of topics around the current new challenges – Digital Supply Chain and Consumer Engagement; Future Value Chain – Rethinking Networks through Omni-Channel for Consumer; The Inflection Point: Demand Chain Management vs. Supply Chain Management; Physical Internet in Supply Chain Management; Industry 4.0 and Rethinking Supply Chain 4.0 – being well-attended. It is well-known that every step that occurred in SCM 4 ECR Conference’s history (1996-2017) was in its own way unique, also considering the recent confirmation of the inclusion of the Supply Chain Management Journal in Top 100. These achievements are incontestable proofs of the passion, competence and perseverance of Professor Virgil Popa, Conference Founder and Chairman, the builder of this true brand – Supply Chain Management (SCM) for Efficient Consumer Response (ECR) Conference.
It is also worth highlighting the launch within this special context of the new book “SCM4ECR” (822 pages, 557 references etc.) of Professor Virgil Popa, a great work speaking for itself. It is our pleasure to make reference to the distinctive stamp put by the reputed Ruediger Hagedorn in his Foreword: “… it contains the experience of a lifetime… is both a future classic and a treasure…” written by a “… dear friend, admired professor and renowned expert Prof. Virgil Popa”.
It is well-known that Professor Virgil Popa is Vice President of the Executive College of SSMAR, and Director of ECR Department (since 1996) of the Romanian Distribution Committee.