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Center for Transportation and Logistics

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CBS News

Prof. Yossi Sheffi speaks with David Pogue of CBS Sunday Morning about what’s causing the current supply chain breakdowns. "The underlying cause of all of this is actually a huge increase in demand,” says Sheffi. “People did not spend during the pandemic. And then, all the government help came; trillions of dollars went to households. So, they order stuff. They order more and more stuff. And the whole global markets were not ready for this."

New York Times

Josué Velázquez Martínez, director of the MIT Sustainable Logistic Initiative, speaks with Tim Heffernan of The New York Times Wirecutter about how offering online shoppers the option to select slower shipping times in an effort to reduce carbon emissions could help make e-commerce a more environmentally-friendly option. 

CNN

Prof. Yossi Sheffi speaks with CNN’s Zachary Wolf about how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected supply chains, impacting the supply of ketchup packets and causing delays in computer chips. “During the pandemic many industries reduced their orders and suppliers reduced their orders and capacity even further (because they anticipated that future orders will also be reduced),” says Sheffi. “When the economy came back, there was no capacity to snap right back.”

New York Times

In a letter to the editor that appeared in The New York Times, senior lecturer Jonathan Byrnes advocates for a continuous flow of vaccinations to quickly protect the population against Covid-19. “We need two things: 1) a core of highly experienced supply chain managers supplementing the public health professionals; and 2) a management structure, probably under the Defense Production Act, to coordinate, organize and manage the supply chain,” Byrnes writes.

Forbes

Forbes contributor Sharon Goldman spotlights Prof. Yossi Sheffi’s new book, “The New (Ab)Normal,” which examines how companies shifted their operations during the Covid-19 pandemic. Goldman writes that in the book, Sheffi “details how businesses grappled with the chaos of the pandemic, and explores what enterprises are likely to do to survive and thrive in 2021 and beyond, after the pandemic starts to subside.”

The Wall Street Journal

Prof. Yossi Sheffi speaks with Wall Street Journal reporters Sarah Krouse, Jared S. Hopkins and Ana Wilde Mathews about the challenges posed by distributing the Covid-19 vaccine across the country. “Everything has to come together—the packaging, the dry ice, the vials, the material itself. It all has to come together to the same place and have enough of it and exactly the right people there ready to take it,” says Sheffi. “Right now, there’s no conductor to the symphony,” just many parts that each need to work. 

Marketplace

Research scientist Matthias Winkenbach discusses the difficulties posed by massively scaling up capacity to deal with a surge in online shopping caused by the holidays and the Covid-19 pandemic. “I think especially this time of the year and under these circumstances, maybe also the consumers need to reconsider whether everything they order on Amazon or elsewhere needs to be delivered as fast as possible,” says Winkenbach, “or whether there’s certain things to prioritize and other things to deprioritize.”

The Washington Post

Writing for The Washington Post, Vice President for Open Learning Sanjay Sarma and research associate Luke Yoquinto explore study habits and the science of learning, emphasizing the importance of spacing out learning, in lieu of cramming. “Introducing a bit of space into one’s study or practice schedule can improve long-term outcomes for just about anyone, at any age, trying to learn almost anything,” they write.

Boston 25 News

Prof. Yossi Sheffi speaks with Boston 25 reporter Jason Law about how the Covid-19 pandemic is disrupting supply chains. “I don’t think it’s going to be as bad because we are more prepared for this,” says Sheffi of potential impacts caused by the latest rise in Covid-19 cases. “People now in factories and warehouses have dividers that they can work between. Everybody is wearing a mask. People understand the issue better.”

Financial Times

Research affiliate Ashley Nunes writes for the Financial Times about the FAA certifying the Boeing 737 MAX, and the tradeoffs posed by increased automation. “For all their benefits, robots remain — much like humans — imperfect,” writes Nunes.

The Wall Street Journal

Writing for The Wall Street Journal, Prof. Yossi Sheffi examines the impact of the presidential election on U.S. – China trade relations. Sheffi notes that “business leaders should keep in mind that the trans-Pacific trade war hasn’t curtailed export shipments to the degree many feared.”

Forbes

Writing for Forbes, research engineer Bryan Reimer explores the Massachusetts ballot question that would augment the state’s right to repair law. Reimer writes that the question is “a referendum on how traditional independent automotive repair shops and aftermarket part suppliers are going to function as part of tomorrow’s automotive ecosystem.”

Forbes

Writing for Forbes, research engineer Bryan Reimer explores a question that will be included on election ballots in Massachusetts that “proposes to augment the state’s 2013 Automobile Right to Repair Law with new added vehicle data access requirements.” Reimer argues that the provisions in the ballot initiative are “ripe for cyber terrorism that could quickly place vehicle occupants and other road users at increased risk.”

Forbes

Writing for Forbes, research engineer Bryan Reimer examines Elon Musk’s recent comments about the future of driverless vehicles. Reimer explains that while there likely won’t be a fully self-driving vehicle system available in the next few years, there will be “an evolution of features that utilize drivers as a backup to the automation in situations requiring intervention.”

Financial Times

Writing for the Financial Times, research scientist Ashley Nunes explores the cost of providing support and safety personnel for Waymo’s driverless taxi service. “Technology does not purge the need for human labour but rather changes the type of labour required,” writes Nunes. “Put another way, unless something changes, driverless will not mean humanless.”