The role of Industry 4.0 in developing resilience for manufacturing companies during COVID-19

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2023-02-05
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Débora Bianco
BUENO, A.
GODINHO FILHO, M.
LATAN, H.
GANGA, G. M. D.
FRANK, A. G.
JABBOUR, C. J. C.
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International Journal of Production Economics
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BIANCO. D.; BUENO, A.; GODINHO FILHO, M.;LATAN, H.; GANGA, G. M. D.; FRANK, A. G.; JABBOUR, C. J. C. The role of Industry 4.0 in developing resilience for manufacturing companies during COVID-19. International Journal of Production Economics, v. 256, feb. 2023.
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© 2022 Elsevier B.V.Humanity has faced many crises in the past, such as pandemics, wars, and economic crises, and other crises are certain to come in the future; however, emerging technologies have a role to play in improving companies’ resilience in the face of such crises. The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has led to human, technological, and managerial constraints for manufacturing companies due to scarce resources or supply chain (SC) disruptions. The research goal of this paper is to investigate whether Industry 4.0 implementation improved companies’ resilience and whether companies’ performance maintained stability during the COVID-19 outbreak. Composite-based structural equation modeling is applied to analyse data collected from 207 manufacturing companies. The theoretical model is grounded in the Practice-Based View (PBV) theory. The research findings show that operational responses based on Industry 4.0, smart manufacturing practices, and smart capabilities enable manufacturers to build resilience and quickly mitigate performance loss in times of global crisis. Therefore, the results demonstrate that Industry 4.0 implementation provides resilience for companies through flexibility, reliability, robustness, and responsiveness. The main practical implication of this study is to support managers in achieving manufacturing performance stability during disrupted times, such as the COVID-19 crisis, using Industry 4.0 approaches to make their companies more resilient and prepared to face future challenges and crises.

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