Agent-based simulation provides a methodology to investigate complex systems behavior, such as supply chains, while incorporating many empirical elements relative to both systems structure and agent behavior. While there is a significant amount of simulation and analytical research investigating the impact of information sharing in supply chains, few studies have used empirical demand for the model. This research utilizes empirical distributions in order to determine the demand process faced by distribution centers in a distribution network. Therefore, the distribution centers face independent and heterogeneous demand that is not normal, and exhibits a much larger coefficient of variation than is generally utilized in similar research. With so much complexity and variability, contrasting different inter-organizational information sharing configurations provides an ideal setting for utilizing common random numbers for variance reduction. Comparisons made using this methodology show clear differences between the different information sharing schemes.
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