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COLL300 I001 Winter 2023 – Enhancing Supply Chain Management Policies for American Red Cross


Supply chain management is a critical area for non-profit organizations, such as the American Red Cross, that rely on the timely and efficient delivery of goods and services to their clients and beneficiaries. Effective supply chain management can help improve operational efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance the organization’s ability to respond to emergencies and disasters (Jusko, 2009). The American Red Cross is a non-governmental organization that works in the United States to offer emergency aid, relief efforts, and training. One of the critical components of its operations is supply chain management, which involves the planning, procurement, storage, and distribution of goods and services to those in need. This report aims to provide an advocacy approach to address these policy challenges.


Relevant Theories of Policy Change

In recent years, there has been growing recognition of the importance of supply chain management in the non-profit sector. As a result, several initiatives have been launched to support the development of best practices, tools, and frameworks for supply chain management in the sector. For example, the Humanitarian Logistics Association (HLA) and the Fritz Institute have developed guidelines and training programs for humanitarian logistics and supply chain management. Similarly, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has launched the Supply Chain Technical Assistance (SCTA) program to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of supply chains for global health products. The advocacy strategy for supply chain management policies could be influenced by a number of policy change ideas. These theories include the multiple streams approach, policy windows theory, punctuated equilibrium theory, and advocacy coalition framework.

The advocacy coalition framework emphasizes the importance of building alliances among groups with shared interests to influence policy change (Sotirov & Winkel, 2016). The policy windows theory highlights the importance of seizing opportunities for policy change that arise due to external events or changes in the political climate. The punctuated equilibrium theory emphasizes that policy change occurs through a series of punctuated events, rather than gradual and incremental changes. Finally, the multiple streams approach emphasizes the need to align policy ideas, political contexts, and policy windows to achieve policy change.


Scan of Responsible GDs, NGOs, and Research Organizations

Several organizations work in the area of supply chain management in the humanitarian sector. These include the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the World Food Programme (WFP), and the United States Agency for International Development (Des Moines, 2005). These organizations are working on policy changes related to supply chain management, such as improving logistics, increasing transparency, and enhancing collaboration among stakeholders. To address these challenges, the American Red Cross should advocate for the establishment of a national standard for supply chain management in the non-profit sector. This standard would provide a framework for non-profit organizations to develop and implement effective supply chain management practices. It would also ensure accountability, transparency, and efficiency in the sector, and help build trust among stakeholders.


Aspect of the Policy Worth Changing

One aspect of supply chain management policy that is worth changing is the lack of transparency in procurement processes. Procurement processes in the humanitarian sector are often opaque, making it difficult to ensure that aid is delivered efficiently and effectively. There is a need to increase transparency in procurement processes by implementing standardized procurement procedures, enhancing the use of technology to track and monitor procurement, and increasing stakeholder participation in procurement decisions. In addition, the American Red Cross can leverage its reputation and expertise to build awareness and support for this policy change among the public and policymakers (Olsen et al., 2017). It can use its communication channels, such as social media, newsletters, and events, to highlight the importance of supply chain management in the non-profit sector and the benefits of establishing a national standard. It can also engage with policymakers at the local, state, and national levels to promote this policy change and advocate for funding and resources to support the implementation of the standard.


Plan for Policy Change

To address the lack of transparency in procurement processes, the American Red Cross should work with other organizations in the sector, such as OCHA, IFRC, WFP, and USAID. The advocacy approach should involve building alliances among these organizations and other stakeholders in the sector, such as suppliers, donors, and local communities. The Red Cross should also advocate for the adoption of standardized procurement procedures and the use of technology to track and monitor procurement. Additionally, the Red Cross should increase stakeholder participation in procurement decisions by involving local communities and suppliers in the procurement process.

The policy advocacy plan should also involve engaging with public officials, such as members of Congress and government agencies responsible for aid delivery, to advocate for policy change ( Azadegan et al., 2020). The American Red Cross can also take practical steps to improve its own supply chain management practices. For example, it can invest in training and capacity building for its staff and volunteers to improve their knowledge and skills in supply chain management. It can also develop partnerships with suppliers and logistics providers to enhance its supply chain infrastructure and reduce costs. Moreover, it can adopt innovative technologies, such as blockchain and internet of things (IoT), to improve supply chain visibility and traceability.


Blockchain Technology

The concept that could be explored in supply chain management is the use of blockchain technology. Blockchain is a decentralized and transparent digital ledger that could help improve the efficiency and accountability of supply chain operations (Rejeb et al., 2019). By implementing blockchain in supply chain management, the Red Cross can have a secure and tamper-proof record of all transactions and movements of goods and services. Moreover, blockchain can enable real-time tracking of goods, reducing the time and cost of manual tracking and verification. This technology can also be used to verify the authenticity of products and ensure that they meet the required standards and regulations. The use of blockchain technology can enhance supply chain visibility, transparency, and traceability, which can help the Red Cross improve its disaster response and recovery efforts.

Integration of Sustainability Practices

Another concept that could be explored is the integration of sustainability practices into supply chain management. The Red Cross can work with its suppliers and partners to ensure that they adopt sustainable practices that reduce their carbon footprint and minimize their impact on the environment. This could involve sourcing raw materials and goods from sustainable sources, reducing waste and emissions, and implementing renewable energy solutions. By integrating sustainability practices into supply chain management, the Red Cross can reduce its environmental impact and contribute to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (Shan et al., 2022). Additionally, sustainability practices can enhance the reputation of the Red Cross as a socially responsible organization that is committed to protecting the environment and promoting sustainable development.




In conclusion, supply chain management is a critical aspect of the American Red Cross’s operations, and improving it can lead to significant benefits for the organization and its stakeholders. The proposed policy change to establish a national standard for supply chain management in the non-profit sector is a step towards ensuring accountability, transparency, and efficiency in the supply chain. By working collaboratively with other NGOs, government agencies, and advocacy groups, the American Red Cross can advocate for this policy change and lead by example in implementing it. It is essential to note that this is not a one-time effort, but rather a continuous process of monitoring, evaluation, and improvement. The American Red Cross can leverage its reputation, expertise, and network to make a positive impact and ensure that the supply chain is optimized to meet the needs of its clients and beneficiaries. With a concerted effort, the American Red Cross can contribute to a more sustainable and resilient non-profit sector, better equipped to serve those in need, particularly during times of crisis.





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Olsen, G. W., Mair, D. C., Lange, C. C., Harrington, L. M., Church, T. R., Goldberg, C. L., Herron, R. M., Hanna, H., Nobiletti, J. B., Rios, J. A., Reagen, W. K., & Ley, C. A. (2017). Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in American Red Cross adult blood donors, 2000–2015. Environmental Research, 157, 87–95.

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Sotirov, M., & Winkel, G. (2016). Toward a cognitive theory of shifting coalitions and policy change: linking the advocacy coalition framework and cultural theory. Policy Sciences, 49(2), 125–154.



Article Name
COLL300 I001 Winter 2023 - Enhancing Supply Chain Management Policies for American Red Cross
This paper seeks to offer the American Red Cross a strategy for advocating for changes in supply chain management legislation. The report gives a summary of pertinent theories of policy change, a survey of important government agencies, non-governmental organizations, research institutions, and peak organizations active in the policy field, as well as a recommendation for a section of the policy that needs to be changed. The study also includes a strategy for policy change, including the campaign, activities, or tactics that would work best for the Red Cross organization and the organizations, groups, people, or government servants who would be targeted for the strategy for policy advocacy.
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