Ninth International Conference on Lean Six Sigma

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management

Ninth International Conference on Lean Six Sigma

Theme: Operational Excellence in the era of Industry 4.0 and Industry 5.0

Dates: 13th and 14th November 2023

Venue: Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University, Newcastle, UK

Organized by: Northumbria University, England, UK


Operational Excellence (OPEX) is a management philosophy that continuously improves an organization’s performance by eliminating waste, reducing variation, and increasing efficiency. Its implementation embodies various theories, methodologies, and tools to optimize processes, enhance quality, and ultimately, deliver value to customers. OPEX methodologies, e.g., Lean, Six Sigma, Kaizen, Lean Six Sigma (LSS) and Agile, have significant potential to eradicate the causes that throttle growth in organizations. Today, OPEX methodologies are considered to be an integral part of many businesses, transforming them into world-class organizations.

Although many companies have been utilizing OPEX methodologies for many years, only a handful companies have managed to transform their businesses through such methodologies. The ninth International Conference on Lean Six Sigma will explore the use of OPEX integrated with Industry 4.0 and 5.0 technologies for achieving superior performance and quality across various industrial sectors ranging from manufacturing to service to even public sector organisations.

Important Dates

  • Deadline for submission of abstract: 9th of June 2023
  • Notification of acceptance of abstract: 30th of June 2023
  • Deadline for submission of full paper: 11th of August 2023
  • Notification of acceptance of full paper: 8th of September 2023
  • Latest date for submission of conference paper (with final changes): 6th of October 2023

Conference Objectives

  • Build a network of individuals from both industry and academia willing to take a pioneering role in promoting OPEX methodologies
  • Share case studies of OPEX methodologies from various industrial sectors
  • Share experiences on continuous improvement (CI) or OPEX journeys from practitioners and academics in different countries
  • Critically assess the current status of OPEX applications on a global platform. This may include the challenges, success factors, failure factors and leadership models for the successful deployment of CI or OPEX methodologies
  • Develop a platform for leading academics and researchers to discuss the common research areas within OPEX which could potentially lead to joint research grant applications and publications in top tier journals.

Conference Topics

The keynote speakers and workshop leaders of this international event are pioneers and leading practitioners of OPEX methodologies. The Ninth International Conference on Lean Six Sigma would like to invite papers for the following themes:

Theme 1: Application of OPEX methodologies (in particular; Lean, Six Sigma, Kaizen, LSS and Agile) in any industrial setting

Theme 2: OPEX for the service economy (e.g. Financial services, Airline, Logistics, Health, Hospitality etc.)

Theme 3: OPEX for public sector and non-profitable sector (e.g.: Higher Education, Police Force, Ambulance Services, Voluntary sector etc.)

Theme 4: OPEX and its impact on supply chain

Theme 5: Integration of OPEX with Industry 4.0 and Industry 5.0 / Digitalization (e.g.: Lean 4.0, LSS 4.0, Lean 5.0 etc.)

Theme 6: Leadership for OPEX

Theme 7: OPEX and circular economy including Green

Theme 8: OPEX and Innovation (service innovation, product innovation process innovation etc.)

Theme 9: Sustainability of OPEX

Theme 10: OPEX with other quality methodologies, tools and systems (e.g.: OPEX and ISO 9001)

Who should attend this conference?

  • Senior Managers in various organisations
  • Academics and Researchers engaged in OPEX and Industry 4.0 / 5.0 topics (OPEX and Digitalization)
  • OPEX professionals
  • Quality Professionals
  • Lean Professionals/practitioners
  • Continuous Improvement professionals in all sectors
  • PhD students and researchers
  • Industry 4.0 and 5.0 professionals /Digitalization
  • Business Leaders and Executives
  • Consultants

Paper Submission

The basis for acceptance of papers is that they are relevant and contribute to the current literature of Operational Excellence and Digitalization. Authors are invited to submit an abstract of 300 words or less to the scientific coordinators. All conference abstracts will be double-blind reviewed by the members of a review committee. Each abstract should have a separate title page that includes title of the paper, author name/s, affiliation/s, full contact addresses including fax, phone and e-mail. Your abstract must include 5 to 8 key words that capture the contents of your paper. For multiple authors, please indicate clearly to whom correspondence should be made. Authors must register for and attend the conference if their submission is accepted. We encourage electronic mail submission in Microsoft Word. Once the abstract is accepted, the authors are encouraged to submit the full paper.

Please note that we strongly suggest all authors to follow a structured abstract. Use of structured abstracts ensures that better information is supplied and that there is more consistency across the journals and database. Ultimately, readers and researchers searching the database are more likely to access the paper when the abstract provides useful information. In the past, author-written abstracts were very variable both in terms of content and quality. Structured abstracts ensure we no longer have this problem.

In an electronic environment, abstracts are more important that they have ever been. Sometimes this “snippet” is the only thing a reader or researcher will see and it is the one chance we have of persuading them to download the full text of the paper. To produce a structured abstract for the journal and Emerald database, please complete the following fields about your paper. There are four fields which are obligatory (Purpose, Design, Findings and Value); the other three (Research limitations/implications, Practical implications and Social Implications) may be omitted if they are not applicable to your paper.

Abstracts should contain no more than 250 words. Write concisely and clearly. The abstract should reflect only what appears in the original paper.

  • Purpose of this paper: What is the reason(s) for writing the paper or the aims of the research?
  • Design/methodology/approach: How are the objectives achieved? Include the main method(s) used for the research. What is the approach to the topic and what is the theoretical or subject scope of the paper?
  • Findings: What was found during the work? This will refer to analysis, discussion, or results.
  • Research limitations/implications (if applicable): If research is reported on in the paper this section must be completed and should include suggestions for future research and any identified limitations in the research process.
  • Practical implications (if applicable): What outcomes and implications for practice, applications and consequences are identified? Not all papers will have practical implications but most will. What changes to practice should be made because of this research/paper?
  • Social Implications (if applicable): What will be the impact on society of this research? How will it influence public attitudes? How will it influence (corporate) social responsibility or environmental issues? How could it inform public or industry policy? How might it affect quality of life?
  • What is originality/value of paper: What is new in the paper? State the value of the paper and to whom.

How to submit the Abstract and full paper:

The Abstract and full paper should be submitted via email to Prof. Jiju Antony as the conference chair or Dr. Alireza Shokri as the conference co-chair.

Please click here for more information about how to write a full paper.

Writing the full paper

Papers should be typed on standard A4 pages using 12-point Times New Roman typeface or equivalent in MS Word. Final Manuscripts should be limited to 3000 words in length, single spaced with double space between paragraphs. Authors’ names, affiliations and e-mail address should be provided after the title. The title must be bold-faced and centered in upper/lower case. Figures and Tables should be sized to scale and labelled with a caption centered under the Figure or Table. It is preferable to have the figures and tables included in the text but if this is not possible, please place all Figures and Tables at the end of the text (after References) and ensure that a place-mark is inserted in the body of the text (e.g.: “Insert Figure 1 here” or “Insert Table 1 here”). It is strongly advised to use Harvard style of referencing throughout the paper.

Here are some examples:

For books:

Phadke, M.S. (1989), Quality Engineering Using Robust Design, Prentice-Hall International, Englewood Cliffs, NJ

For book chapters:

Bessley, M. and Wilson, P. (1999), Marketing for the Production Manager, in Levicki (Ed.), Taking the Blinkers off Managers, Broom Reim, London, pp. 29-33.

For journal articles:

Montgomery, D.C. (1992), The Use of Statistical Process Control and Design of Experiments in product and process improvement, IIE Transactions, Vol.24, No.5, pp. 4-17.

All accepted papers will be published in the Conference Proceedings. The conference chair and co-chairs will also be exploring opportunities to publish an edited book after the conference.


Sponsorships are available for the conference to promote your representative organization/institution:

  • Platinum – £ 2500 (this includes fee registration fee for up to 8 delegates, adding logo of the sponsorship organization, free distribution of all promotional flyers, a table for exhibition)
  • Gold – £ 1500 (this includes fee registration fee for up to 5 delegates, adding logo of the sponsorship organization, free distribution of all promotional flyers, a table for exhibition)
  • Silver – £1000 (this includes fee registration fee for up to 3 delegates, adding logo of the sponsorship organization, free distribution of all promotional flyers, a table for exhibition)
  • Bronze – £500 (this includes fee registration fee for 1 delegate, adding logo of the sponsorship organization, free distribution of all promotional flyers, but no table provided for exhibition)

Please note:

If a sponsor would like to have a table, the minimum sponsorship fee has to be £1000.

Sponsors will be allotted time during the luncheon to do a Lightening Talk for conference attendees.

Please contact either Prof. Jiju Antony or Dr. Alireza Shokri for any queries related to conference sponsorship.

Conference Speakers:


Professor Jiju Antony: Professor of Operations Management, Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University, England, UK

E-mail: [email protected]

Co-Chairs (Global):

Dr. Chad Laux: Associate Professor, Department of Computer and Information Technology, Purdue University, Indiana, USA

E-mail: [email protected]

Dr Guilherme Tortorella: Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Melbourne, Australia

E-mail: [email protected]

Dr Daryl Powell: SINTEF Manufacturing

E-mail: [email protected]

Dr Raja Jayaraman: Associate Professor, Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi, UAE

E-mail: [email protected]

Co-Chairs (Local):

Dr Alireza Shokri: Reader in Operations and Supply Chain Management, Northumbria University, England, UK

E-mail: [email protected]

Dr Adrian Small: Associate Professor of Operations Management, Northumbria University, England, UK

E-mail: [email protected]

Note: All queries related to conference and submission of abstracts and full papers must be forwarded to any of the global or local chairs.