Logistics and Supply Chain in the Urban-Rural ecosystem


Logistics and Supply Chain in the Urban-Rural ecosystem

Facultad de Administración
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Remote and rural areas present unique challenges in terms of logistics and transportation planning. Low densities of people, long distances, and difficult access conditions make logistics and transportation activities and, therefore, planning, quite different from planning and operations in cities and densely populated areas. For example, access to services and their timing and uncertainty could be much more important than capacity - the ship is never full, but is there even a ship? When? Almost half the world’s population lives in such areas, yet the existing literature does not cover logistic and transportation issues related to rural areas.

The course focuses on issues and models related to planning logistics and transportation services in remote and rural areas.

Regular students at the University (students who are studying for an undergraduate or graduate degree) will not be able to register through the Educación Continua for this course. In case of registration, the Management will proceed with its return.


  • Understand the logistics planning challenges faced in areas with a low density of people, long distances and difficult access conditions. 
  • Identify how logistic planning in rural areas fundamentally differ from logistic planning in densely populated areas. 
  • Understand how to apply the principles of operations management and operations research to tackle the challenges posed by the rural logistic applications.


Each day the students will attend sessions of 3 hours, which include two 15 minutes breaks . The first 45 minutes will be used to present the core concepts of the session followed by a 15 minutes break. During the second third, 15 minutes will be used to present a case or real situation followed by a 30 minutes group work. During the last part of the the session, there will be a 20-30 minutes gathering to discuss the different findings of the groups. To wrap up the session the session leader will close connecting the discussion back to sessions topic and will introduce the next day session. The content of the course is founded on recent research. For that reason, the dynamic is to bring the focus to the issues related to the urban-rural interaction and the potentail to develop solutions rather than formulate prescribed solutions.

Evaluation system:

  • Participation 40%
  • Oral presentation 40%
  • Final essay 40%

Participation (20%). The course aims to build an uderstanding of the challenges related to the urban-rual interaction. That understanding will be a collective construction, and for that reason we must hear all voices taking part of the sessions. To obtain the 20%, each participant must have participation recorded in at least four of the disussions during the first 8 sessions.

Oral presentation (40%). To be done at the last day of class. The assesment will be based on the clarity and the ability to handle the Q&A session with the other participants. 

Final essay (40%) The essay has a page limit of 5 pages, excluding the front page and the reference seccion. For the last two sessions the participants will take the lead to close the build up of our collective understanding of the topic. The assigment consists of identifying a situation in the context of Colombia. The strucutre of the presentation and essay must include the following:

  • A description of the situation.
  • The elements that connects the situation to the topic of the urban-rual ecosystem.
  • Describe what are the supply chain/logistics challenges and opportunities that can be identified in the situation. In particular, we are interested in knowing if the aim is to serve an underserved area, or exploit the economical potential or a remote place, or both. It is important to also formulate clear goals and objectives aligned with that the aim.
  • Sketch how to use analytical tools to asses the situation and support the decisions required to realize the goals and objectives proposed. Here is not expected a detail model from the participants. The idea is to think as a decission maker that will require support to asses and decide the course of action. The goal is to asses if the participants are able to identify the appropriate tools and define the requirements and lead a team of experts.
  • Close with a conclusions section describing a course of action.


Class 1:


Class 2:

15-minute cities in the urban-rural nexus

Class 3:

Hands-on: using data for analysis and maps visualization

Class 4:

Digitalization in rural areas

Class 5: 

Logistics and transportation in remote areas

Class 6:

Hands on: Using optimization to model logistics networks

Class 7:

Uncertainty in decisions

Class 8:

Collaborative logistics

Class 9 - 10:

Presentation of the students' ideas


Julio César Góez

Julio C. Góez hails from Medellín, Colombia. He started at NHH on December 12 2015, as an Associate Professor at the Department of Business and Management Science since 2020, and is a member of the Centre for Shipping and Logistics. Previously, he was at GERAD research center and Polytechnique Montréal as a postdoctoral fellow, where he was awarded one of the 2013 GERAD Postdoctoral Scholarships. Julio received his Ph.D. at the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Lehigh University in September 2013. He worked on optimization algorithms and in optimization software development under the supervision of Dr. Tamás Terlaky. He received his M.Sc. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia, South America, and held the position as an instructor there from September 2004 to July 2007. He received his B.Sc. degree in Industrial Engineering in 2002 from the University of Antioquia, Medellín, Colombia.


Eventualmente la Universidad puede verse obligada, por causas de fuerza mayor a cambiar sus profesores o cancelar el programa. En este caso el participante podrá optar por la devolución de su dinero o reinvertirlo en otro curso de Educación Continua que se ofrezca en ese momento, asumiendo la diferencia si la hubiere.

La apertura y desarrollo del programa estará sujeto al número de inscritos. El Departamento/Facultad (Unidad académica que ofrece el curso) de la Universidad de los Andes se reserva el derecho de admisión dependiendo del perfil académico de los aspirantes.