Logistics, Connectivity, and Security

Stephen DeAngelis

March 31, 2006

Tom Barnett points to a long and thoughtful post by Shawn Beilfuss on the role of logistics in stabilizing Gap states and integrating them into the Core (for background on this terminology, see the glossary on Tom’s site).  Worth reading in full.  Many points stand out but what’s also striking is the overview — the clear description of the role of logistics in creating connectivity within an organization, across organizations, and at the national and transnational levels, connecting states, regions and the global economy.  Logistics — which seems at first glance to be an organizational support function — is in fact the glue that holds together organizational performance, the performance of multiple organizations in a networked supply chain, and the performance of economic systems.  And it’s a relatively small step from economic health to global stability and security.  Several lessons emerge from this — about the critical importance of protecting the supply chain by making it more resilient, and the about the opportunity to move Gap states into the Core by applying private-sector best practices, such as resilient supply chain management.  To focus on logistics is to help make our world a less dangerous place.