Rethinking the Management of Technological Innovations, Product Complexity and Modularity: The Effects of Low-Probability, High-Impact Events on Automotive Supply Chains

  • Adrian E. Coronado Mondragon
  • Christian E. Coronado Mondragon
Conference paper


Japan’s tidal wave of 2011 represented a Black Swan, one low-probability, high-impact event that disrupted supply chains all over the world. The automotive sector, characterized for the extensive use of modularity to handle technological innovations and product complexity, was severely affected. A review is provided of the implications of the 2011 Black Swans on supply chains of automotive modules that use complex electronic components such as microcontroller units (MCUs). The disruptions to the supply of MCU-based modules prompted to discuss the supplier park model, resulting in the generation of a solution that has the potential to mitigate future Black Swans effects.


Supply Chain Controller Area Network Global Supply Chain Black Swan Supply Chain Risk 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Altay N (2008) Issues in disaster relief logistics. In: Gad-el-Hak M (ed) Large-scale disasters: prediction, control, and mitigation. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 120–146Google Scholar
  2. Altay N, Ramirez A (2010) Impact of disasters on firms in different sectors: implications for supply chains. J Supply Chain Manage 46(4):59–80CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Automotive Logistics Magazine (2011) Car makers told: don’t hoard, distribute. November 16–22. Accessed 26 Apr 2012
  4. Automotive News (2011a) Quake may prompt auto industry to revisit supply chain, expert says. March 30, 2011. Accessed 1 Dec 2011
  5. Automotive News (2011b) High-tech suppliers are the toughest to replace. April 4, 2011. Accessed 4 Dec 2011
  6. Automotive News (2011c) Key supplier to shift chip production from damaged plant. April 8, 2011. Accessed 01 Dec 2011
  7. Automotive News (2011d) After quake, Toyota finds switching suppliers is huge task. April 13, 2011. Accessed 01 Dec 2011
  8. Automotive News (2011e) Toyota wants to quake-proof its supply chain, avoid risks. September 6, 2011. Accessed 07 Sept 2011
  9. Coronado Mondragon AE, Lyons AC (2008) Investigating the implications of extending synchronised sequencing in automotive supply chains: the case of suppliers in the European automotive sector. Int J Prod Res 46(11):2867–2888CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Huang GQ, Zhang XY, Lo VHY (2007) Integrated configuration of platform products and supply chains for mass customization: a game-theoretic approach. IEEE Trans Eng Manage 54(1):156–171CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Juttner U, Peck H, Christopher M (2003) Supply chain risk management: outlining an agenda for future research. Int J Logist 6(4):197–210CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Khan O, Burnes B (2007) Risk and supply chain management: creating a research agenda. Int J Logist Manage 18(2):197–216CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Murray C (2011) Renesas recount Japan earthquake recovery. Design News Magazine, November issue. Accessed 06 Dec 2011
  14. Ohnsmann A, Mukai A, Hagiwara Y (2011) Toyota, Honda may not recover output until 2012 with Thai flood. Businessweek, November 5. Accessed 26 Apr 2012
  15. Richter A (2011) How to protect your supply chain. Vision Magazine, November/December, 14–16Google Scholar
  16. Renesas (2011) Renesas electronics business continuity plan. October.Google Scholar
  17. Sako M (2011) Technology strategy and management driving power in global supply chains. Commun ACM 54(7):23–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Taleb NN (2007) The black swan, the impact of the highly improbable. Penguin, LondonGoogle Scholar
  19. Tetu L (1998) Supply chain planning & synchronization. APICS. The performance advantage 8, 6 June 1998Google Scholar
  20. Thun J-H, Hoenig D (2011) An empirical analysis of supply chain risk management in the German automotive industry. Int J Prod Econ 131:242–249CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Wagner S, Bode C (2006) An empirical investigation into supply chain vulnerability. J Purch Supply Manage 12:301–312CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Wright A (2011) Hacking cars. Commun ACM 54(11):18–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Yahoo news (2011) Japan carmakers take steps in North America to fight disruption. March 30. Accessed 06 Dec 2011

Copyright information

© Springer India 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adrian E. Coronado Mondragon
    • 1
  • Christian E. Coronado Mondragon
    • 2
  1. 1.School of ManagementRoyal Holloway University of LondonSurreyUK
  2. 2.School of Ocean TechnologyFisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University of NewfoundlandSt John’sCanada

Personalised recommendations