Research institutes

Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation

The Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation (BISCI) develops smart and sustainable innovations in supply chain management. Set up by Maastricht University and the Province of Limburg in early 2019, BISCI seeks to apply the latest results of logistics research to address the challenges of service providers in the region and beyond. In addition, the institute trains the next generation of professionals who can contribute to supply chain innovation in the industry. BISCI derives its strength from closely collaborating with partners in the public, private and community sectors.

The BISCI expertise and innovation centre is to start operations this summer. It will be part of the 'ecosystem' of Brightlands Greenport Campus Venlo, in which the business community, academics, students and representatives from various governments work together through open innovation and co-creation.

In this way, BISCI contributes directly to the innovation and competitiveness of individual companies and organisations in various sectors and helps strengthen the region’s economic infrastructure.

BISCI was set up by UM and Limburg province to help boost the regional economy.

BISCI has an opening for an Assistant Professor Supply Chain Management (tenure track)

A Brightlands institute

Brightlands logo

Brightlands is an open innovation community in a global context, connecting four campuses in the province of Limburg: in Maastricht, Heerlen, Sittard-Geleen and Venlo. The campuses provide entrepreneurs, scientists and students state-of-the-art facilities to support development, education, innovation and growth. Naturally, there are close links between all four Brightlands campuses, and together they enable Limburg to serve as an innovation region where researchers and entrepreneurs take on the major challenges in the areas of materials, health, food and smart services.

Research themes

BISCI is closely connected to the department of Marketing and Supply Chain Management of the Maastricht University School of Business and Economics. The department offers an established team of scholars and an existing infrastructure that facilitates high-quality research relevant to industry.

The “triple bottom line” is a key concept within smart and sustainable supply chain management. It holds that organisations should commit to focus on social and environmental concerns, just as they do on economic gains. For every company, there should be a harmonious balance between "profit, people, and the planet" to obtain long term value creation and corporate social responsibility.

Research at BISCI is driven by new technological developments, the use of digitalisation and big data, the scarcity of resources and the role of people within the supply chain.


Currently, BISCI is connected to two MSc programmes in Supply Chain Management:

  • Global Supply Chain Management and Change (in Venlo)
  • International Business / Supply Chain Management (in Maastricht)

Exemplary research topics include:

  • Augmented reality (AR) in warehouses
  • Autonomous vehicles and platooning
  • Smart sensors in containers
  • Drones for last-mile delivery
  • Developing stronger but lighter packaging
  • Supplier-enabled logistics services innovation
  • Traceability of CO2 emissions throughout supply chain
  • Digital technologies in logistics activities



    Blog: What is the purpose?

    Wednesday, October 21, 2020

    The Netherlands is a country of people with a trade instinct, but also with a moralistic side. However, this seems to be changed because of the COVID-19 crisis. A strong shared purpose would help procurement professionals navigate these ethical challenges accelerated by COVID-19.

    Read more
  • supply chain valley

    The creation of a new innovation hub for supply chain in Venlo

    Tuesday, October 6, 2020

    At the end of August several companies, amongst them vidaXL, Moonen Packaging, Seacon Logistics, Arvato Supply Chain Solutions and Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation (BISCI), joined together to create Supply Chain Valley (SCV). The SCV is a collaboration that seeks to work with government, companies and academia to deliver joint goals that result in great outcomes for all involved and the wider environment, society and economy.

    Read more
  • smart_packaging

    BISCI partner of Smart Packaging for Intelligent Logistics

    Wednesday, September 23, 2020

    Since January 2020, BISCI participates on behalf of Maastricht University in the research project Smart Packaging for Intelligent Logistics. A consortium of triple-helix organizations participate in this ambitious project, funded by OpZuid and the European Union.

    Read more
  • Lieven

    Introductory Interview - Lieven Quintens, Senior Researcher at BISCI

    Tuesday, September 15, 2020

    Lieven Quintens, Senior Researcher at BISCI, gives a brief introduction about his role at BISCI and UM, the important role of researchers and his favourite restaurant in Maastricht among other things.

    Read more

    Blog: 2020 - Tipping Point for Digitization?

    Tuesday, September 8, 2020

    The COVID-19 crisis has made it very clear that professional buyers and supply chain managers (SCM) are important for our economy. COVID-19 has been a wake-up call for many companies and the spotlight is on Procurement and SCM. So, how do we actually deal with risks in our supply chains?

    Read more
  • Bart_Vos

    Introductory Interview - Bart Vos, Scientific Director at BISCI

    Wednesday, August 26, 2020

    Bart Vos, Scientific Director at BISCI, gives a brief introduction about his role at BISCI and UM, his views on team building and an insight into his activities on a normal working day. 

    Read more
  • Ton_Geurts

    Introductory Interview - Ton Geurts, Business Development Director at BISCI

    Wednesday, August 26, 2020

    Ton Geurts, Business Development Director at BISCI, gives a brief introduction about his role at BISCI, his views on sustainable development and an insight into how he enjoys life in Maastricht.

    Read more
  • Home_office

    Ton Geurts shares his experience on working from home during COVID

    Wednesday, August 5, 2020

    Working from home has become the norm for many of us these days. Some love it while some would prefer to go back to their old routine. And yet, there are many reasons to believe that working from home, or at least a more flexible way of working, is the new normal. In this article, BISCI's Business Development Director Ton Geurts shares his own experience with home working, some of the lessons he's learned along the way along with his views on the future of home working. 

    Read more
  • Bisci_4

    First month at BISCI: the perspective of our two newest team members

    Wednesday, August 5, 2020

    Grant and Shreyas officially joined BISCI on 1 July as project managers. In this role, they work closely with Business Development Director Ton Geurts and support projects involving sustainability and digitalisation. After one month on the job, they share their first impressions and thoughts. 

    Read more
  • simmer_meeting

    BISCI Summer Meeting 2020

    Wednesday, July 29, 2020

    After over three months of virtual meetings, emails and video conferences, Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation (BISCI) had its first in-person Summer Meeting on 10 July.

    Read more

    Blog: Major Supply Chain transformation ahead?

    Wednesday, July 1, 2020

    Earlier this month, Procurious (a global business network for supply chain management professionals) published its first Supply Chain Confidence Index. The study reveals that nearly all (97%) of the 600+ SCM professionals surveyed experienced a supply chain disruption related to COVID-19.

    Read more
  • Ton_Geurts

    BISCI contributes to research article on future of Purchasing and Supply Management

    Thursday, June 18, 2020

    Ton Geurts, Business Development Director at BISCI, has recently contributed to a research article on the future direction of purchasing and supply management. 

    Read more

    A snapshot of the first BISCI event

    Monday, February 17, 2020

    The Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation had its first event at the Brightlands Greenport Campus hosting around 200 guests with exiting workshops around digital and sustainability.

    Read more
  • Bisci_4

    Catching up with BISCI: ambitious agenda to create digital and sustainable supply chain innovation

    Monday, January 27, 2020

    Set up by Maastricht University and the Province of Limburg in early 2019, the Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation (BISCI) drives state-of-the art digital and sustainable supply chain innovation, combining expertise from knowledge institutions, businesses and government. Last week, we caught up with BISCI’s business development director Ton Geurts and BISCI’s scientific director Bart Vos to get an update on the institute’s first year and find out about their plans for the future.

    Read more
  • Vessel

    Article: Innovating obsolescence management in a service logistics network

    Tuesday, December 3, 2019

    A network of companies has been involved in the maintenance of maritime equipment for the Royal Dutch Navy. How can this complex network of organisations improve the way they work together to enhance availability of ships and uninterrupted missions due to missing spare parts for maintenance?

    Read more
  • bisci_2

    BISCI workshop during Dutch Food Week

    Friday, October 11, 2019

    During the Dutch Food Week, Bart Vos hosted the interactive workshop ‘Sustainable food, how does it get on our plate?’ at BISCI’s home turf, the Villa Flora in Venlo. While the focus of the Dutch Food Week is mainly on what we eat, Bart’s workshop addressed how we get food where we want to consume it.

    Read more
  • Bisci

    BISCI participates in funding workshop on shorter logistics chains & bundling

    Thursday, October 10, 2019

    BISCI participated in a workshop hosted by TKI Dinalog for the Nationale WetenschapsAgenda (NWA)-route 16 on ‘Logistics, Transportation and Mobility’ on Friday 4 October.

    Read more
  • ton

    Ton Geurts joins BISCI as new Business Development Director

    Tuesday, August 27, 2019

    Ton Geurts will join BISCI as Business Development Director. He will support Greenport Venlo logistics and supply chain management from the Brightlands Campus in the Limburg region through smart and sustainable innovations.

    Read more
  • Dr Kars Mennens

    Kars Mennens to join BISCI research team

    Friday, June 14, 2019

    Kars Mennens will help expand BISCI, build up a network of supply chain industry partners, develop training and education, and work on sustainable innovations in the sector.

    Read more
  • ITS Conference

    Smart mobility and the human factor

    Thursday, June 13, 2019

    Self-driving cars, truck platooning, robots running distribution centres. Developments in automated traffic and transport are going very fast, but where does this leave human beings?

    Read more
  • inNOWvate banner

    BISCI endorses the need to innovate in the digital era

    Friday, May 24, 2019

    BISCI shares the vision expressed at the inNOWvate event to innovate the supply chain in the digital era.

    Read more
  • Gartner Supply Chain Top 25

    Gartner’s 2019 Supply Chain Top 25 is out

    Friday, May 24, 2019

    Dutch chemical company Akzo Nobel has entered the Supply Chain Top 25 for the first time. Unilever has moved to the "Masters" category.

    Read more
  • TNO BISCI brainstorm

    TNO and BISCI – natural partners joining forces

    Monday, May 20, 2019

    High-level delegations from Maastricht University and TNO's Traffic and Transport team met with regional industry representatives on 17 May to explore ways of working together.

    Read more
  • BISCI workshop with Fontys and LIOF

    Friday, May 10, 2019

    Video-report on the highly interactive workshop with participants from Fontys and LIOF.

    Read more
  • Professor Bart Vos

    Bart Vos joins Brightlands Institute for Supply Chain Innovation

    Monday, May 6, 2019

    Professor Bart Vos of the Tilburg School of Economics and Management will join BISCI after the summer.

    Read more


No upcoming events

We're open to collaboration

BISCI is a transparent institute, open to collaboration and looking for complementarities with other knowledge institutions and parties who share the ambition of smart and sustainable supply chain solutions.

If you’re interested in working with us, please give us a call or drop us a line.