The Objectives and factors affecting Performance of last mile Relief Distribution in Post-Disaster operations: The case of India
The world has witnessed an increasing number of natural disasters in recent years affecting large populations. The logistical operations to deliver relief to these populations are complex requiring careful planning and execution especially during the Last Mile Relief Distribution (LMRD), the ultimate phase in these operations. LMRD is the phase where the disaster logistics chain directly connects with the affected communities and whose performance is affected by many factors. The aim of this paper is to evaluate the impact of relevant factors on LMRD performance in the context of India, the most affected country in the world by natural disasters. The research was conducted interviews with International NGOs and Indian government, national, and international NGOs involved in disaster relief operations in the country to determine the factors affecting LMRD operations. The qualitative phase findings identified coordination as the most significant factor affecting LMRD operations performance in India and established an outline, which will be used as a planner of LMRD before decision-making process in India. This research identifies coordination as a major factor of LMRD operations in India. Its impact is evaluated through the development of a conceptual model, which provided empirical evidence of the magnitude of LMRD performance improvement by adopting new coordination policies. The research provides suggestions for new ways on how to achieve better coordination and implement these successfully in Indian LMRD operations.