Academic journal article Theoretical and Empirical Researches in Urban Management

Reverse Logistics and Space Allocation for Recovery Management in New Urban Settlements

Academic journal article Theoretical and Empirical Researches in Urban Management

Reverse Logistics and Space Allocation for Recovery Management in New Urban Settlements

Article excerpt

1. Introduction

At the end of the 20th century, Roger and Tibben-Lemke (1999) defined the reverse logistics concept as "the process of planning, implementing and controlling the efficient, cost-effective flow of raw materials, in-process inventory, finished goods and related information from the point of consumption to the point of origin for the purpose of recapturing value or proper disposal". At that time, this definition did not take into consideration the package materials. De Brito (2003) completes the above definition and describes the reverse logistics as "the process of planning, implementing and controlling the backwards flows of raw materials, in-process inventory, packaging and finished goods from manufacturing, distribution or use point to a point of recovery or proper disposal".

Recently, in 2006, the Reverse Logistics Association expanded the definition beyond returns processing to include repair, customer services, parts management, end-of-life manufacturing and order fulfilment. Nowadays there are a lot of definitions for reverse logistics, but the literature, still at the beginnings, is scarce and not well structured. It can be outlined some directions (philosophies) that have evolved during the time with respect to the domain and needs of the actors: economic agents, population, local or central public authorities, non-governmental agencies. These directions dealing with reverse logistics are depicted in figure 1 and relate to:

1. municipal waste logistics;

2. reverse logistics of refused goods, recently coming out due to e-commerce development;

3. reverse logistics of used and unused goods with recovery value:

* out of order goods, unused for repairing,

* obsolete and replaced goods, with recovery value, used or unused;

* unwished goods and not returned to the early selling point.

Figure 1 outlines those stages in a reverse logistics chain that require the presence of centralized recovery centres--CRC, where either non-used products or used products having re-use value could be easily collected. In an extended and comprehensive study already mentioned, Rogers and Tibben-Lamke (1999) thoroughly examine the key elements of the reverse logistics management, where the centralized recovery centre is one of the issues of successful recovery management strategy, as one can see in the following list:

* Gatekeeping

* Compacting Disposition Cycle Time

* Reverse Logistics Information Systems

* Centralised Return Centres (CRC)

* Zero Returns

* Remanufacturing and Refurbishment

* Asset Recovery

* Negotiation

* Financial management

* Outsourcing.

[FIGURE 1 OMITTED]

Another important issue, rather as an environmental principle, is the "Extended Producer Responsibility"--EPR. This principle has the meaning (Sands, 2003) of the legal nuance to the term, in a sense that "binds acts of international organizations, state practice and soft law commitments". In the EPR programs, producers' liability, physical, financial and informative responsibilities are extended to cover the end-of-life phase of their products to various degrees (Manomaivibool, 2009). The infamous of the waste electrical and electronic equipment Directive 2002/96/EC of the European Union puts a rather comprehensive scope of responsibility on the producers. The transposition of the waste electrical and electronic equipment--WEEE Directive into the national legislations and the implementation in the 27 member states varies considerable (Huisman et al. 2007).

Starting with the experience of the European EPR program of WEEE, this paper considers that there are at least three necessary elements of any other EPR program (related to any other end-of-life products):

1. controlled downstream activities,

2. resource flows from identifiable producers to downstream activities,

3. …

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