Abstract for: Humanitarian Crisis: when Supply Chain really matters

The supply chain of humanitarian aid is a complex and interlinked network in which different actors, processes, decisions and information are mixed to serve the needs of the victims in a catastrophe. As aid can be vital, also the correct management of the supply chain and the efficiency in each one of its stages is important not only to support the reconstruction efforts, but to allow a correct and pertinent assistance of the needy population. In an incidence as a disaster, arrivals, transportation, storage and delivery of necessary goods becomes a difficult task that requires the mobilization of a great amount of resources. The supply chain is therefore stretched to their limits; that is why it is so important to understand its behavior and capacity, regarding the handling of shelter, food, water, and health care (among other necessities). The main objective of this paper is to model and describe the different phases comprising the supply chain of a humanitarian crisis using the system dynamics methodology, understand how those variables affect its operation and identify critical break points and inefficiencies that arise in each of the stages.