The influence of relational competencies on supply chain resilience: a relational view

Andreas Wieland (Kühne Foundation Center for International Logistics Networks, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany)
Carl Marcus Wallenburg (Department of Supply Chain Management, WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management, Vallendar, Germany)

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management

ISSN: 0960-0035

Publication date: 17 May 2013



The purpose of this research is to explore the resilience domain, which is important in the field of supply chain management; it investigates the effects relational competencies have for resilience and the effect resilience, in turn, has on a supply chain ' s customer value.


The research is empirical in nature and employs a confirmatory approach that builds on the relational view as a primary theoretical foundation. It utilizes survey data collected from manufacturing firms from three countries, which is analyzed using structural equation modeling.


It is found that communicative and cooperative relationships have a positive effect on resilience, while integration does not have a significant effect. It is also found that improved resilience, obtained by investing in agility and robustness, enhances a supply chain ' s customer value.

Practical implications

Some findings contrast the expectations derived from theory. Particularly, practitioners can learn that integration has a limited role in enhancing resilience.


The study distinguishes between a proactive and reactive dimension of resilience: robustness and agility. The relational view serves as the theoretical basis to explain the effects between three types of relational competencies (communication, cooperation, and integration) and the above-mentioned two dimensions of resilience.



The authors would like to thank Christoph Bode (ETH Zurich), Jason Miller (The Ohio State University), the joint TU Berlin/WHU logistics research team, and anonymous reviewers for valuable discussions and feedback as well as the Kühne Foundation for financial support of this research.


Wieland, A. and Marcus Wallenburg, C. (2013), "The influence of relational competencies on supply chain resilience: a relational view", International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 43 No. 4, pp. 300-320.

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