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Implementing Sustainability In Multi-Tier Supply Chains: Strategies and Contingencies In Managing Sub-Suppliers

Wilhelm, M., Blome, C., Wieck, E. & Xiao, C., Dec-2016, In : International Journal of Production Economics. 182, p. 196-212 17 p.

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  • Implementing sustainability in multi-tier supply chains

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DOI

Buying firms must pay increased attention to supply chain sustainability issues, as stakeholders might hold them responsible for non-sustainable supply chain activities. Frequently, sustainability problems occur upstream at the sub-supplier level. Building on the literature on multi-tier supply chains (MSCs), we investigated the sustainability management strategies of buying firms in the food, apparel, packaging, and consumer electronics with regard to second-tier suppliers and beyond. In particular, we analyzed seven cases of global MSCs and found four different characteristic MSC types-open, closed, third party, and "don't bother". We identified three main factors-supply chain complexity, the sustainability management capabilities of the first-tier supplier, and the type of sustainability in focus (i.e., environmental or social sustainability)-that determine when and how buying firms actually extend their sustainability strategies to their sub-suppliers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)196-212
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Production Economics
Volume182
Publication statusPublished - Dec-2016

    Keywords

  • Sustainability, Buying firm strategies, Multi-tier supply chains, Case studies, OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT, SOCIAL-RESPONSIBILITY, BUILDING THEORIES, MODERATING ROLE, PERFORMANCE, IMPACT, PERSPECTIVE, NETWORKS, INTEGRATION, INDUSTRY

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