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During the Cold War, a heated debate arose over the role of economic planning. Did the planned economy of the USSR or the free-market economy of the U.S. allocate resources more productively?

Arguments against planned economies centered on the limits of information processing, the feasibility of production forecasts and the inflexibility of centralized plans.

The Soviet Union’s collapse seemed to relegate the economic planning concept to the dustbin of history. But issues raised in those debates are still relevant today.

New research finds that the top 1% of American companies control 90% of U.S. production-related assets and account for 80% of sales revenue. This means a relatively small number of companies are responsible for the majority of U.S. economic activity.

For these companies, planning – particularly the coordination of activities across global supply chains – represents a significant strategic focus. Americans rarely think about the importance of planning, but it plays a crucial role not only in the availability of consumer products but also in the economy overall.

Dan Pellathy, assistant professor of practice and director of operations of the Advanced Supply Chain Collaborative, shares his research on how businesses are facing the challenges of supply chain management through planning. Read more at The Conversation.

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Cindi King (865-974-0937,