Nike Factories To Get Help From MIT's Sloan School - InformationWeek

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Nike Factories To Get Help From MIT's Sloan School

The school will examine business drivers at the facilities to gain insight to help Nike better manage production flow and work hours.

Nike Inc. will open some of its factories to research teams from the Sloan School of Management at MIT this year. The school will examine business drivers at the facilities to gain insight to help Nike better manage production flow and work hours, according to a factory report issued by Nike Wednesday.

As part of the report, Nike disclosed names and locations of more than 700 manufacturing sites in its supply chain that produce its sneakers, apparel, and exercise equipment. The factories are in the Asian countries of China, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam, as well as Australia, Canada, Italy, Mexico, Turkey, and the United States.

The report was developed in the aftermath of allegations of sweatshop-type conditions in some of Nike's overseas operations. Nike audited 549 factories in 2004 and found cases of verbal and physical abuse in more than 25% of its south Asian factories. According to the report, refusal to work overtime led to penalties in more than one-tenth of the plants surveyed.

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