| 26.10.2021

Doctoral thesis: Improved legal processes with supply chain thinking

A supply chain perspective can enable the identification of problems in legal processes, factors that affect public procurement and vulnerabilities in preparedness for cascading disasters. New research examines what a supply chain perspective entails in strictly regulated public services and processes.

Isabell Storsjö has studied the justice system and health care, energy and water services sectors in Finland, and in her thesis discusses how the public sector can benefit from research in Supply Chain Management and what research on commercial sectors can learn from the public sector. The interest for these themes originated from Storsjö’s background in law:

“When the European Court of Human Rights assesses whether proceedings fulfil the criteria for a fair trial within a reasonable time, it does not only consider the conduct of the courts but evaluates how actions of other relevant actors affect the process. I started wondering whether a supply chain perspective could make legal processes faster and cheaper, without diminishing quality or weakening the rule of law”, Storsjö recalls.

In her research, Storsjö applies the management philosophy “lean thinking” in the justice system. This approach focuses on creating value for the final customer at the same time as wasteful activities in the process is removed. This is a topical issue in Finland, where an ongoing statute drafting project aims to make the criminal procedure more efficient by considering the principles of lean.

Because of her studies in law, Storsjö was also involved in a research project on innovation and public procurement. Preparedness and security of supply were important aspects of the project, since critical sectors in Finland were the starting point for data collection.

Storsjö sees an increased interest in Supply Chain Management literature in the achievement of other goals than profit maximisation, and in considering authorities as important actors in their own supply networks. The Covid-19 pandemic is a “wicked problem” that has made visible the fragility of global supply chains and how disruptions can affect different sectors and systems in society.

“The relevance of my research was revived because of the pandemic. There is a continued need to study innovation- and preparedness-related public procurement, and preparedness for disasters that cascade between sectors. When the state debt increases, it is necessary to find methods, like lean thinking, to use resources better”, Storsjö adds.

You can read the whole thesis via this link.

The public defence takes place on 1 November 2021 at 12 p.m. The doctoral defence will be held by video conference. You can access the video conference via Teams via this link.

Opponent: Professor Madeleine Pullman, University of Groningen
Custos: Professor David Grant, Hanken School of Economics

More information:
Isabell Storsjö