The research area of operations management and logistics includes quantitative and qualitative studies guided by the topic of management and operations strategy.

More specifically, the operations management and logistics research area focuses on the strategic management of processes and activities in operations in all its aspects, including quality, product and process innovation, logistics, capacity management, and relationship management, among others, which enable operations to generate a competitive advantage. Our research takes a practical approach to complex topics and prioritizes the development and application of different models and theories from an interdisciplinary perspective. This approach seeks to value the potential contributions of other areas of business management, such as finance and marketing, and other disciplines, such economics and product engineering.

The structure for research in this thematic field is organized by the Interdisciplinary Unit for Logistics Research and Extension (NIPE-LOG/UFMG) and the Unit for Efficiency, Sustainability and Productivity Studies (NESP). NIPE-LOG was created in 2006 with the mission of developing research and extending knowledge in the field of operations management and logistics, based on initiatives that promote the technical, academic, and practical knowledge of business systems and supply chain management for goods and services. Among relevant areas for research and business diagnostics, NIPE-LOG undertakes studies and analyses on the following topics in the field of operations management and logistics:

  • Planning and logistical system modeling
  • Integrating logistics functions (shopping, inventory, transportation, storage, order management, and service levels) and mapping the logistical performance of supply chains
  • Studies of best practice for logistics in supply cycles, manufacturing, and distribution
  • Integrating key business processes for marketing and logistics in the context of businesses and supply chains
  • Collaborative environment management in supply chain management
  • Segmentation of suppliers in supply and innovation processes
  • Models for maturity in supply chain management
  • Logistical capabilities and orientation for supply chain (Supply Chain Orientation (SCO))
  • Retail logistics
  • Service quality management
  • Service operations management
  • Logistics in the context of local productive arrangements (LPAs)
  • Philosophy and techniques for production and lean supply
  • Support for development of governmental projects in Public Administration.

The Unit for Studies in Efficiency, Sustainability, and Productivity (NESP) was created in January 2013 with the goal of gathering academics and students from various departments at UFMG, as well as other educational institutions, to develop research, consulting, and training in business efficiency and productivity analysis. In general, the primary ideas behind NESP's activities involve studies of efficiency and productivity, organizational sustainability, energy and energy efficiency, and strategic processes and project management. The researchers at this unit are involved in all aspects of analyzing efficiency, sustainability, and productivity at the business and industry level in the private and public sectors. Measurement methods include index numbers, data envelopment analysis (DEA), stochastic frontier analysis, and econometric production models. Among NESP's specific goals are:

  • Studying and developing methods for measuring productivity, efficiency, and economic performance
  • Applying methods for evaluating the performance of companies, industries, and sectors at the national and international levels
  • Conducting research to explain and interpret patterns of productivity in sectors and economies
  • Establishing ties with researchers from other countries to conduct joint research projects and set up student exchanges
  • Studying and developing models of economic regulation
  • Studying and developing models and analyses of sustainability and environmental within a company;
  • Strengthening ties with private companies through focused consultations to bring knowledge about the real problems they are facing into the university and classroom.
  • Offering short programs for researchers, managers, and technicians from various industry sectors and the government;
  • Providing researchers of the unit with an environment for discussion, knowledge building, and unity—the unit’s goals.

Research findings developed by NIPE-LOG and NESP have been published in several of the most prominent events in the international and Brazilian academic community. These include

  • the International Annual European Operations Management Conference (EUROMA);
  • the International Purchasing and Supply Chain Education and Research Association (IPSERA);
  • the Production and Operations Management Society (POMS) International Conference, the International Data Envelopment Analysis Conference (INFORMS); 
  • the European Operations Research Conference (EURO);
  • the Symposium for International Production, Logistics, and Operations Administration (Simpósio de Administração da Produção, Logística e Operações Internacionais (SIMPOI));
  • the Meeting of Graduate Programs in Business Administration (Encontro dos Programas de Pós-Graduação em Administração (ENANPAD));
  • the Production Engineering Meeting (Encontro de Engenharia de Produção (ENEGEP )); and
  • the Brazilian Symposium for Operational Research (Simpósio Brasileiro de Pesquisa Operacional (SBPO)).

Faculty of the Logistics and Operations Management Area

  • Dr. Ana Lúcia Miranda Lopes
  • Dr. Marcelo Bronzo Ladeira
  • Dr. Marlusa Gosling
  • Dr. Noel Torres Júnior
  • Dr. Ricardo Silveira Martins

Thematic Fields

Studies of best practice in the production of goods and services

This thematic field considers the study of the best supply and production practices applied to industrial processes and services, addressing topics that involve the characteristic aspects of lean and sustainable production developed and implemented in the business environment.

Management and control of operations performance

This thematic field considers the operations management of companies and business clusters in terms relevant to logistics (such as supplier management, training, and management of the logistics network, and the distribution pipeline) and operations (such as production systems aimed at enhanced performance). In this field, studies concern production systems and their performance metrics, measurement systems for controlling production operations and logistical processes, and supply chain management. This thematic field specifically considers studies that promote knowledge of the relationship between logistics planning, operations models, and the design of performance measurements and their respective implementation.

Logistics in governmental projects in public administration

This thematic field considers studies of the dynamics of logistics processes in the institutional context of the performance of public organizations, including an interest in investigating the phenomena of transfer and adoption of private sector best practice in operations management in public entities. This includes concepts such as the principle of sustainability, service levels, acquisition processes, and operations management.

Logistics systems modeling

This thematic field considers studies that involve developing mathematical models for optimization, heuristics, and/or simulation to provide managers with situation analyses and assistance in planning and decision-making processes to increase efficiency, sustainability, and organizational productivity.

Planning and managing supply chains

This field includes the study of supply chain management, where the coordination and integrated management of logistics activities and subsystems are highlighted. It is geared to the study of technological and management initiatives that maximize the coordination of flows of material and information in the context of logistics networks, the pillars of which are collaboration, cooperation, and relationships.

Efficiency and productivity analysis

This field includes accessing and developing methods to measure efficiency, productivity, and economic performance and applying these to the evaluation of the performance of domestic and international businesses, industries, and sectors. The field also includes conducting research to explain and interpret patterns of productivity and economic growth among nations; and conducting ex-post and ex-ante assessments of the effects of reforms on regulated companies, with an emphasis on efficiency and productivity.

Relationship, Value, Communication, and Management of Tourism Services

This thematic field includes the study of relationship management among various actors within the productive process, based on the collaboration, cooperation, and coopetition processes of businesses (B2B) and the relationship between businesses and the consumer market. The field also covers studies of value co-creation in relationships, the study of integrated communication as an approach for creating and strengthening the relationships, trust, loyalty, and satisfaction of actors. Studies of tourism services consider the tourism trade, with a focus on the relationships and experiences of actors, such as tourism businesses and consumers, hospitality management, and service productivity strategies.