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Alignment of green supply chain strategies and operations from a product perspective

Ying Ye (Department of Management Science, School of Politics and Public Administration, Soochow University, Suzhou, China)
Kwok Hung Lau (School of Accounting, Information Systems and Supply Chain, College of Business and Law, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia)
Leon Teo (Department of Operations, Toby Co, Melbourne, Australia)

The International Journal of Logistics Management

ISSN: 0957-4093

Article publication date: 8 May 2023

Issue publication date: 1 December 2023




This study aims to explore how green supply chain management (GSCM) strategies can be effectively implemented for business supply chain operations, relationship management and product design to gain green competitive advantages.


An exploratory in-depth case study was conducted with one of the largest Chinese electronics manufacturers that is considered a leading GSCM adopter in the industry, to understand how the company adopts green supply chain practices across its multiple product lines.


The findings show that businesses can build different green focuses across GSCM elements of green operation, green relationship management and green product design to form diverse hybrid strategic solutions. They include green control, lean, leagile, agile and clean innovation while taking consideration of supply chain type and product lifespan. A taxonomy of four key GSCM strategic combinations is proposed based on the findings. The strategies align with green demand and supply chain characteristics balancing a series of business competitive objectives in terms of reducing pollution and waste, improving green cost efficiency, enhancing green demand innovation and building green service effectiveness.

Research limitations/implications

This study lends insight into the strategic alignment relationships between product supply chain types and approaches to GSCM.

Practical implications

The findings of this study can support industry practitioners in formulating aligned GSCM strategies based on product types to achieve optimal results.

Social implications

Optimised green supply chain design, operations and relationship management incorporating product attributes can help further minimise negative impacts of business activities on the environment.


This research provides a systematic understanding of how product supply chain types can influence GSCM strategy formulation. It gives a holistic picture of how hybrid choices of strategies with green supply chain operations, relationship management and product design can be formulated based on product and supply chain characteristics.



This paper forms part of a special section “Papers from the 25th International Symposium on Logistics (ISL)”, guest edited by Drs K.S. Pawar, Andrew Potter and Chandra Lalwani.

The authors would like to thank the company and associated personnel especially the environment management team who provided us valuable information for this research; and the authors thank Soochow University for offering the funding for this study.

Funding: This research is funded by Academic Start-up Grant for Young Scholars of Soochow University, grant number: Z230250(NH10200323).


Ye, Y., Lau, K.H. and Teo, L. (2023), "Alignment of green supply chain strategies and operations from a product perspective", The International Journal of Logistics Management, Vol. 34 No. 6, pp. 1566-1600.



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Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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