Photograph of Robert J. Trent.

Robert J. Trent, Ph.D.

Co-director, Center for Value Chain Research

Lehigh University

Dr. Robert Trent is the co-director of the Center for Value Chain Research, the supply chain management program director, and the George N. Beckwith professor of management at Lehigh University, where he teaches at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He holds a B.S. degree in materials logistics management from Michigan State University, an M.B.A. degree from Wayne State University, and a Ph.D. in purchasing/operations management from Michigan State University.

Prior to his return to academia, Bob spent seven years with the Chrysler Corporation. His industrial experience includes assignments in production scheduling, packaging engineering with responsibility for new part packaging set-up and the purchase of nonproductive materials, distribution planning, and operations management at the Boston regional parts distribution facility. He has also worked on numerous special industry projects.

He has authored or co-authored articles appearing in many journals and has presented numerous topics at conferences and seminars. His coauthored study on cross-functional sourcing team effectiveness was published through the CAPS Research in 1993; a coauthored research report on purchasing/sourcing trends was published through CAPS in 1995; a third CAPS project that investigated how organizations reduce the effort and transactions required to purchase low value goods and services was published in 1999; and a coauthored CAPS Research study on global sourcing was published in 2006. He is also the coauthor of a textbook titled Purchasing and Supply Chain Management and the author of the book Strategic Supply Management—Creating the Next Source of Competitive Advantage. His book, End-to-End Lean Management—A Guide to Complete Supply Chain Improvement was published in 2008. Another book, Managing Global Supply and Risk—Best Practices, Concepts, and Strategies,” was published in 2009.