This PhD dissertation is framed in the emergent fields of Reverse Logistics and ClosedLoop Supply Chain (CLSC) management. This subarea of supply chain management has gained researchers and practitioners' attention over the last 15 years to become a fully recognized subdiscipline of the Operations Management field. More specifically,
among all the activities that are included within the CLSC area, the focus of this dissertation is centered in direct reuse aspects. The main contribution of this dissertation to current knowledge is twofold. First, a
framework for the so-called reuse CLSC is developed. This conceptual model is grounded in a set of six case studies conducted by the author in real industrial settings. The model has also been contrasted with existing literature and with academic and professional experts on the topic as well. The framework encompasses four building blocks. In the first block, a typology for reusable articles is put forward, distinguishing between Returnable Transport Items (RTI), Reusable Packaging Materials (RPM), and Reusable Products (RP). In the second block, the common characteristics that render reuse CLSC difficult to manage from a logistical standpoint are identified, namely: fleet shrinkage, significant investment and limited visibility. In the third block, the main problems arising in the management of reuse CLSC are analyzed, such as: (1) define fleet size dimension, (2) control cycle time and promote articles rotation, (3) control
return rate and prevent shrinkage, (4) define purchase policies for new articles, (5) plan and control reconditioning activities, and (6) balance inventory between depots. Finally, in the fourth block some solutions to those issues are developed. Firstly, problems (2) and (3) are addressed through the comparative analysis of alternative strategies for controlling cycle time and return rate. Secondly, a methodology for calculating the required fleet size is elaborated (problem (1)). This methodology is valid for different configurations of the physical flows in the reuse CLSC. Likewise, some directions are pointed out for further development of a similar method for defining purchase policies for new articles (problem (4)). The second main contribution of this dissertation is embedded in the solutions part (block 4) of the conceptual framework and comprises a two-level decision problem
integrating two mixed integer linear programming (MILP) models that have been formulated and solved to optimality using AIMMS as modeling language, CPLEX as solver and Excel spreadsheet for data introduction and output presentation. The results obtained are analyzed in order to measure in a client-supplier system the economic impact of two alternative control strategies (recovery policies) in the context of reuse. In addition, the models support decision-making regarding the selection of the appropriate recovery policy against the characteristics of demand pattern and the structure of the relevant costs in the system. The triangulation of methods used in this thesis has enabled to address the same research topic with different approaches and thus, the robustness of the results obtained is strengthened.