Innovation in Sustainable Supply Chains: Interaction for Resources from an SME Perspective

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Supply chain management is increasingly challenged to integrate environmental (e.g. product recyclability) and social issues (e.g. labor conditions) to establish sustainable supply chains. Apart from a risk-orientation in sustainable supply chain management (SSCM) companies can also pursue an opportunity-oriented strategy linked to innovation. In this paper we develop the argument that SSCM is an opportunity for companies to develop sustainability-oriented innovations (SOIs), that is, improved or new products, processes, and organizational structures. For this purpose we focus our analysis on SSCM from the perspective of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) as, so far, little is known on how SMEs manage SSCM within the business-toconsumer (B2C) context, even though SMEs are important for sustainable development. We argue that SSCM can play a central role for SOIs of SMEs by making resources accessible through the interaction with primary (e.g. customers, suppliers) and secondary supply chain stakeholders (e.g. competitors, universities). Building on the resource-based and relational view we develop a conceptual framework which discusses how resource flows can occur in the interaction with different supply chain stakeholders. As a result, we explicate theoretical propositions and implications for practice.
Translated title of the contributionInnovationen in sustainable supply chains: Interaktion für Ressourcenaustausch aus einer KMU-Perspektive
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSupply Management Research : Aktuelle Forschungsergebnisse 2013
EditorsRonald Bogaschewsky, Michael Eßig, Rainer Lasch, Wolfgang Stölzle
Number of pages26
Place of PublicationWiesbaden
PublisherGabler Verlag
Publication date2013
ISBN (Print)978-365-80306-0-5
ISBN (Electronic)978-365-80306-1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2013