Extant research has yielded conflicting results regarding the relationship between adoption of green supply chain management (GSCM) practices and competitive advantage. The purpose of this paper is to further investigate this relationship by examining the case of green reverse logistics (GRL).
Through the lens of diffusion of innovation and resource‐advantage theory, the authors examine whether or not consumers perceive products made via GRL practices to be equivalent to brand‐new products in terms of quality. A survey method is used to gather data from a diverse sample of 533 participants. Data are analyzed via ANOVA to test the hypotheses.
The findings suggest that consumers perceive products made via some GRL practices to be inferior to brand‐new products in terms of quality. However, participants indicated no perceived quality difference between products made with recycled materials and brand‐new products.
The findings suggest that adoption of some GSCM practices may not necessarily lead to competitive advantage, which may inhibit diffusion of GSCM. This study is limited by its focus on just one aspect of competitive advantage. Future studies should examine the relationship between GSCM adoption and other measures of competitive advantage.
Understanding that consumers may perceive products made via some GRL activities as being inferior in quality to brand‐new products, firms wishing to employ GRL may wish to compete on other dimensions, such as low price or service.
This research corroborates previous research findings that suggest adoption of GSCM may not lead directly to competitive advantage. Future research is suggested to continue to build this body of literature.
Hazen, B.T., Cegielski, C. and Hanna, J.B. (2011), "Diffusion of green supply chain management: Examining perceived quality of green reverse logistics", The International Journal of Logistics Management, Vol. 22 No. 3, pp. 373-389. https://doi.org/10.1108/09574091111181372
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