Collaborative Planning in Multi-tier Supply Chains Supported by a Negotiation-Based Mechanism and Multi-agent System

Jorge E. Hernández, Josefa Mula, Raúl Poler, Andrew C. Lyons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Effective business process collaboration between companies operating in a supply chain can bring about important benefits, but several barriers need to be overcome. One important obstacle evidenced by professionals is related to the information and communication technologies used to support such collaboration. Although a supplier and a manufacturer may be willing to establish a closer relationship, a lack of easy-to-operate enterprise applications can thwart their collaborative ambitions. Specific technologies are required for each type of collaborative business process as generic applications do not lend themselves to addressing complex situations. Complexity lies in the need to consider common standards for information and decision exchanges, and for designing and implementing the right information and decision flow among supply chain members to support collaborative processes. This paper focuses on collaboration of demand, production and replenishment planning along a supply chain, and proposes a multi-tier, negotiation-based mechanism supported by a multi-agent system. The research hypothesis is that improvements in the service and profit level of supply chain members, and in the entire supply chain, can be achieved by implementing this form of collaboration. The proposed collaborative planning model was used to address a real automotive supply chain configuration for the purpose of testing its appropriateness and validating its performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-269
Number of pages35
JournalGroup Decision and Negotiation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Collaborative planning
  • Multi-agent systems
  • Multi-level supply chain decision making
  • Negotiation


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