In the past two weeks over 10,000 people have visited this Blog. Transformational Logistics is an umbrella term for Logistics and the Informal Economy and, with the Majority World being home to 4 billion people the relevance is clear.

Just think … 1.8 billion ovens to heat water and cook; the carpet industry of Afghanistan from mountainside loom to Mall and room; wild honey from Southern India and Pharmaceuticals; 10% of the US Economy is Informal; 27% of the economy of Italy; 76% of the Philippines; 40% of all fruit and vegetables rotting on the way to market in India; bicycles carrying more tonnage than twenty miles of railway trucks; Kerala fishermen negotiating price 30 kms out to sea … on a mobile phone; billions of dollars in microcredits and, roads that dissolve in a monsoon…

Then, there are all of those micro enterprises that are an integral part of huge supply chains. The Toyota model drew considerable competitive strength from the components made away from the factory and many more have followed. Globalisation and outsourcing has taken the role of the Informal economy far beyond the sweat shop industries or agriculture. And this will feature on the Blog in coming weeks. It will take the agenda into some of the biggest industries world wide and, open up the debate on the Informal market and the Green Supply Chain. Exciting stuff!

The informal market has survival in its DNA and, innovation is part of rethinking, making do and making things last. Walk through the sweatshops of Dharavi; consider the “sub prime” loans (sic) that have built up Bangladesh; more white goods are sold into the Favelhas than into the mainstream. And think of collapsing trust in that bastion of the developed world – the Banks. In fact, the Philippines is just one country to report that the informal sector is growing as migrant workers retrun from those countries experiencing the worst of the downturn. These are just snapshots of why it is time to check our assumptions.

Logistics practitioners, Academics and the curious from all over the world – 39 countries and counting – have read through the ideas and there has been useful dialogue by e mail and on Skype.

Momentum builds for this umbrella term for Logistics and the Informal market. Last week I was presenting Transformational Logistics in the USA. This weekend the LSCM presented TL to an NITT Conference in India. Already, Professor Lenny Koh is working on T L and the Green Supply Chain at the University of Sheffield. We are talking with designers about the affordable supply chain. We are looking at ideas on what to do with bikes and flat pack cooling chambers for remote rural areas – there’s plenty of waste paper around these days to be used to mould affordable facilities. In March a delegation will visit Tamil Nadu to explore ideas along the supply chain. And in Kilkenny, it is reported …

Here are a set of powerpoints that start to sum things up …

[T L Intro]

There is more to follow.

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