Participant Information Leaflet

Study Title: What is the Supply Chain?
Investigator(s): Professor Janet Godsell, Dr Antony Karatzas, Ruth Leary

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You are invited to take part in a research study. Before you decide, you need to understand why the research is being done and what it would involve for you. Please take the time to read the following information carefully. Talk to others about the study if you wish.

(Part 1 tells you the purpose of the study and what will happen to you if you take part. Part 2 gives you more detailed information about the conduct of the study)

Please contact us if there is anything that is not clear or if you would like more information. Take time to decide whether or not you wish to take part.


What is the study about?

The study aims to present the concept of ‘Supply Chain’ in a creative and novel way that will provide rich new insights to the public, practitioners and policy makers, in order to inform the future development of Supply Chain strategy and policy and drive behavioural change at the individual level.

Do I have to take part?

It is entirely up to you to decide. If you If you choose to participate, and before you provide answers to our questions, you will need to tick a box on the website indicating your agreement to take part in this study. Since this study is based on your input to a website, by answering the stated questions you are giving your consent for the information that you have supplied to be used in this study, and formal signed consent will not be collected. You will be free to withdraw at any time, without giving a reason and this will not affect you or your circumstances in any way.

What will happen to me if I take part?

All you are expected to do is to interact with the website we have developed. It is supposed to be a fun experience. Here we describe the steps in detail.
On the first page of the website you will have the chance to see the Supply Chain ‘story’ of ice cream by clicking and viewing a number of videos and photos, each one of them showing a different stage of its production. Text boxes with interesting ‘fun’ facts about the ice cream’s constituents will also pop up. Here you will also get the chance to register / log in by choosing a username and submitting an e-mail address and some basic demographic information.
In the form there will be the questions that will try to capture what the term Supply Chain means to you.
Subsequently, you will be encouraged to tell us your own supply chain ‘story’. This can be through writing something in free text, or uploading a video or image illustrating your contribution or interaction with a supply chain. Your entry will be automatically added to a mosaic wall of other entries along with a map with pins indicating the locations of all users. By capturing your approximate location, we will have a good picture of where the contributions to our website come from. We will not try to identify you in any way.
If you return to the website you will be asked to log in and you will directed to the mosaic and map page with all users’ contributions.

What are the possible disadvantages, side effects, risks, and/or discomforts of taking part in this study?

There are no disadvantages, discomforts or side effects of taking part in this study. The only potential danger may result from your decision to upload a photo of yourself that identifies you (e.g. if it includes your name or face). You need to ensure that photos will not put you or someone else in a difficult position. If you realize that this may be the case after uploading such a photo you should contact us ([email protected]).

What are the possible benefits of taking part in this study?

By participating in this study you will increase your understanding of supply chains and realize their pervasiveness and importance for everyday life. Additionally, your contribution, in conjunction with the contribution of others, may lead to improved supply chain strategy in industry and more appropriate government policy.

Expenses and payments

No payments will be made for participants and no expenses will be covered.

What will happen when the study ends?

The data collected through the website will be stored at the back end of the website and will be analysed by the research team. Also, a large chunk of it, mainly the inputs related to the individual supply chain ‘stories’, will be given to commissioned artists who will try to represent it in a creative and artistic way. Their creations will embellish the first day of an important conference we are hosting in November 2015.
The data will be kept for ten years and per University of Warwick regulations.

Will my taking part be kept confidential?

Yes. We will follow strict ethical and legal practice and all information about you will be handled in confidence. Further details are included in Part 2.

What if there is a problem?

Any complaint about the way you have been dealt with during the study or any possible harm that you might suffer will be addressed. Detailed information is given in Part 2.

This concludes Part 1.
If the information in Part 1 has interested you and you are considering participation, please read the additional information in Part 2 before making any decision.


Who is organising and funding the study?

This study is led by Professor Janet Godsell who is the head of the Supply Chain Group at Warwick Manufacturing Group, University of Warwick. It is undertaken in collaboration with Ruth Leary from the School of Cultural Policy Studies. It is being funded through the University of Warwick ESRC Impact Acceleration scheme.

What will happen if I don’t want to carry on being part of the study?

Participation in this study is entirely voluntary. Refusal to participate will not affect you in any way. If you decide to take part in the study, you will need to tick a box on the website indicating your consent. If you agree to participate, you may nevertheless withdraw from the study at any time by closing your internet browser. If, after registering, you decide that you do not want your inputs to be included in our dataset you should contact us directly ([email protected]). We will proceed to remove from our dataset all your details, answers and any visual or textual input that you have provided.

What if there is a problem?

This study is covered by the University of Warwick’s insurance and indemnity cover. If you have an issue, please contact the Chief Investigator of the study: [email protected]

Who should I contact if I wish to make a complaint?

Any complaint about the way you have been dealt with during the study or any possible harm you might have suffered will be addressed. Please address your complaint to the person below, who is a senior University of Warwick official entirely independent of this study:

Director of Delivery Assurance
Registrar’s Office
University House
University of Warwick
[email protected]
024 7657 4774

Will my taking part be kept confidential?

We will not ask you for your actual name, only a username so that you can log on the website. The username you choose will not play any role in the analysis. If your username resembles an actual name, and it happens that we want to use your supply chain ‘story’ for expository purposes, we will transform it into a nickname.
The information you provide through the website will be anonymized and kept confidential.
All data will be securely stored on the hard drive of a computer within Warwick Manufacturing Group. We will not share the raw data with anyone other than the commissioned artists. The research team will make sure that the artists’ creations will not make any participant identifiable.

What will happen to the results of the study?

We are hoping that this study will give us the opportunity for two academic publications. One about the understanding of supply chains in the wider population and one on the methodology itself. Throughout 2016, the main results will also be presented to policy circles, industrialists and in a special session at an academic conference (European Operations Management Association). The findings will also be communicated through the website. The website will be open after November 2016, but all registered participants will receive an e-mail notification when the main findings have been uploaded.

Who has reviewed the study?

This study has been reviewed and given favourable opinion by the University of Warwick’s Biomedical and Scientific Research Ethics Committee (BSREC): REGO-2015-1473

What if I want more information about the study?

If you have any questions about any aspect of the study, or your participation in it, not answered by this participant information leaflet, please contact: [email protected]

Thank you for taking the time to read this participant information leaflet.

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