Sustainable value stream mapping (Sus-VSM) in different manufacturing system configurations: Application case studies

Adam Brown, Joseph Amundson, Fazleena Badurdeen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations


Achieving sustainability in manufacturing requires a holistic view spanning product design, manufacturing processes, manufacturing systems, and the entire supply chain. Such an approach must be taken to ensure the economic, environmental and societal goals of sustainability are achieved. Value stream mapping (VSM) is an important technique used in Lean manufacturing to identify and visualize waste. However, conventional VSM does not directly consider the environmental or societal performance of production lines. Sustainable VSM (Sus-VSM) is a proposed extension of conventional VSM that incorporates metrics for sustainability. The ability to visually assess manufacturing sustainability through VSM increases its usefulness as a tool to identify potential areas of improvement. This paper will examine in detail three case studies to demonstrate the breadth of applicability of the Sus-VSM tool. The findings from the case studies will be used to further examine the aptness and limitations of the tool in assessing and visualizing sustainability performance in different manufacturing system configurations. Potential avenues to overcome the noted issues are discussed for each case. The presented discussions act to validate the proposed methodology, highlighting its flexibility for use in many manufacturing contexts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)164-179
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
StatePublished - Dec 15 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded through a grant from the US Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) and the authors wish to acknowledge the support. The support provided by the satellite dish, dispenser cathode, and mortar fin manufacturers is also greatly appreciated.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • Case studies
  • Lean manufacturing
  • Manufacturing system
  • Sus-VSM
  • Sustainability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (all)
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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