Special issue on literature reviews in supply chain management and logistics

Maria Jesus Saenz (Zaragoza Logistics Center, Zaragoza, Spain AND Project Engineering Group, University of Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain)
Xenophon Koufteros (Mays Business School, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, USA)

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management

ISSN: 0960-0035

Article publication date: 2 March 2015

5294

Citation

Saenz, M.J. and Koufteros, X. (2015), "Special issue on literature reviews in supply chain management and logistics", International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 45 No. 1/2. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPDLM-12-2014-0305

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited


Special issue on literature reviews in supply chain management and logistics

Article Type: Guest editorial From: International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Volume 45, Issue 1/2

Introduction

The objective of this special issue was to generate systematic literature reviews in the field of logistics and supply chain management (SCM). As Meredith (1993, p. 8) states, systematic literature reviews are responsible for “integrating a number of different works on the same topic, summarizing the common elements, contrasting the differences, and extending the work in some fashion.” Through robust and structured methodologies (Denyer and Tranfield, 2009; Rousseau et al., 2008; Smithey, 2012) our ulterior motive was to set an agenda for future research on important SCM and logistics topics. Accordingly, the articles in this special issue of IJPDLM identify new gaps in the literature, raise new research questions, and develop propositions for further investigation. We were particularly insistent that authors offered directions for future research and thus detailed directions and propositions are advanced within each paper. We are positive that the goals articulated at the outset of this endeavor have been achieved. We also believe that this special issue will prove to be rather useful for researchers interested in conducting systematic literature reviews in the future. While there is significant overlap in methodology utilized in these papers, there are also some idiosyncratic aspects that we will highlight in this editorial. Accordingly, our introduction to this special issue summarizes and then synthesizes the approaches undertaken by the eight teams of researchers. We hope that this synthesis can serve as a guide that future researchers in our field can rely and draw upon.

About this special issue

We received an unprecedented number of submissions (over 60) from around the globe (see Figure 1). We must therefore thank the massive number of reviewers whose efforts contributed toward this double special issue. The accepted manuscripts went through multiple (typically three or more) and rigorous rounds of review that required the editorial team and the authors to devote considerable amounts of their time and energy toward this effort. The review process presented in Figure 2 resulted in an acceptance rate of 13 percent.

Figure 1 Residence of primary authors of the submissions

Figure 2 Review process

Four broad topical areas are represented in the special issue. The first three papers focus on supply chain sustainability while another two papers address supply chain resilience. The next two papers focus on global supply chains and the last manuscript examines buyer-supplier relationships.

The titles of the eight manuscripts are listed below for easy reference:

1. Theories in sustainable supply chain management: a structured literature review.

2. Integrating environmental management into supply chains: a systematic literature review and theoretical framework.

3. Stakeholder pressure in sustainable supply chain management: a systematic review.

4. Research on the phenomenon of supply chain resilience: a systematic review and paths for further investigation.

5. Antecedents and dimensions of supply chain robustness: a systematic literature review.

6. Design of global production and distribution networks: a literature review and research agenda.

7. SCM as the key to a firm’s strategy in the global marketplace: trends and research agenda.

8. Strategic responses to power dominance in buyer-supplier relationships: a weaker actor’s perspective.

We begin by summarizing each paper and conclude by presenting a table with best practices for structured literature reviews. Since detailed directions and propositions for future research are offered in each of the articles, we refrain from restating such contributions at length.

The first manuscript by Touboulic and Walker, reviews the literature in sustainable supply chain management (SSCM) and proposes an overarching map of popular theories deployed within the SSCM tradition. The manuscript addresses three basic research questions:

RQ1. What are the dominant theories currently deployed within the SSCM domain?

RQ2. How did these theories impact the conceptualization of SSCM?

RQ3. What might be some promising avenues for future research?

Before engaging in a systematic search of theories, the authors provide several definitions of sustainable SCM in order to set the scene for a purposeful inquiry. The authors adopt Carter and Rogers’ (2008, p. 368) definition that defines SSCM as “The strategic, transparent integration and achievement of an organization’s social, environmental, and economic goals in the systemic coordination of key interorganizational business processes for improving the long-term economic performance of the individual company and its supply chains.” The authors target 15 peer reviewed journals from the SCM (eight) and corporate social responsibility/sustainability (seven) domains from 1995 to 2013. The 15 journals were selected because of their empirical and conceptual focus. The review identified 308 pertinent articles, with a surge of articles appearing since 2008 (over 74.4 percent).

Although the overwhelming number of papers can be classified as research/empirical, disturbingly 65 percent of the articles appear to be a theoretical. Popular theories identified through the review include resource-based view (RBV), Natural-RBV, stakeholder theory, institutional theory, and transaction cost theory. The key theories are presented in table 8 in the manuscript along with typical challenges that each theory can address. The authors posit that most of the theories used in this domain can be described as macro theories that focus on organizational and strategic vis-á-vis individual and behavioral perspectives.

In addition, the authors note that among the different perspectives on sustainability (i.e. environmental, social, economic, or integrated), the social aspect appears to attract the fewest contributions. They suggest that this phenomenon may be attributed to the more quantifiable characteristics of environmental and economic approaches to SSCM. They propose that a more multi-level understanding of SSCM is needed and call for the exploration of micro behavioral theories that have the potential to shed more light on the social/human aspects of sustainability. To this end, the authors present a theoretical map of SSCM.

The second manuscript by Wong, Wong and Boon-itt, focusses its attention on what the authors coin as “green supply chain integration (GSCI).” Using the stakeholder and resource orchestration theories as guides, the authors map the emerging practices and develop a conceptual framework that can serve as a paradigm to conduct research in this domain. The authors review the literature (via the ABI/INFORM ProQuest database) from 1994 to 2012 and identify 142 pertinent articles. The review demonstrates a distinctive growth in the number of publications over the years under examination. The authors emphasize that a key issue in sustainability is integration but note that very few definitions articulate an integrative perspective. The review also reveals that although some literature acknowledges the role of integration, a holistic treatment is rare. Using resource orchestration theory and stakeholder theory the authors explain the necessity of integrating internally as well as externally.

Four GSCI practices are identified: internal, supplier, customer, and community stakeholder practices. The authors note “GSCI is about identifying the right stakeholders (internal functions, suppliers, customers, and wider community stakeholders) and orchestrating their resources and competencies to develop innovative solutions to environmental protection while maintaining competitiveness.” Integration is critical as organizations acquire, bundle, and leverage internal as well as external resources (Koufteros et al., 2014). Table 3 of the manuscript presents specific practices and citations for each type of integration. For instance, supplier GSCI may include practices such as sharing environmental information (e.g. goals, responsibilities, strategies, benefits, best-practices, performance standards), collaborating with suppliers for environmental improvement (e.g. arriving at collective environmental goals, reaching mutual understanding, joint planning and management of environmental initiatives), providing assistance to suppliers (e.g. technical assistance, support, guidance, and when necessary financial support), and integrating their processes (e.g. coordinating, standardizing, and integrating closed-loop forward and reverse supply chain processes and related planning and performance measurement).

The third manuscript by Meixell and Luoma, completes the series on sustainability by examining the impact of stakeholder pressure. Specifically, the authors study ways in which stakeholder pressure influences supply chain sustainability. The manuscript discusses SSCM in light of the triple bottom line (TBL) approach (Seuring and Muller, 2008; Carter and Easton, 2011). The TBL suggests that organizations and respective supply chains should be concerned with performance objectives that go beyond stereotypical economic performance objectives to include both environmental and social objectives. To achieve such objectives, organizations need to engage important stakeholders such as customers, suppliers, shareholders, regulatory agencies, and community members. However, the authors note that some stakeholders may be more influential than others.

The literature review identifies well over 250 articles (using the ABI/ProQuest, Science Direct, and Emerald databases) and includes empirical research studies from as far back as 1994. The authors subsequently selected articles from 20 journals. Ultimately, 49 articles are included in their review. Empirical SSCM research studies appear to be more focussed on customers (88 percent) and suppliers (82 percent) than on other categories of stakeholders such as government (65 percent), NGOs (49 percent), and employees (41 percent). In terms of sustainability focus, 37 percent of the papers study all three dimensions of TBL while 20 percent of the papers examine environmental and economic aspects, 14 percent investigate environmental and social, with only one paper assessing both social and economic issues. In terms of the types of supply chain decisions examined by the studies, 59 percent address purchasing-related decisions while 31 percent examine internal operations and 27 percent product design issues. The strong presence of purchasing-related decisions may be attributed to the heavy representation of purchasing-related journals in the list of 20 journals reviewed in the study. As would be expected, stakeholder theory (31 percent) is frequently used to frame studies in this domain. Resource dependence theory (20 percent) is the second most frequently used theory. The overwhelming majority of studies tend to be either survey based (51 percent) or rely on case study methodology (40 percent). It is apparent that many of the studies (42 percent) emanate from a European context while North America (16 percent) and Asia (16 percent) have somewhat lower counts.

Key findings from the review suggest that stakeholder pressure plays an instrumental role culminating in sustainability awareness, adoption of sustainability-based goals, and implementation of respective practices. The authors also contend that diverse stakeholders may have “dissimilar influence in the sustainable supply chain decision areas.” Finally, the authors ascertain that the influence of specific stakeholders rests on type of sustainability context; whether it is environmental or social. The authors advance a conceptual model for SSCM and argue that stakeholder pressure affects sustainability awareness, adoption of sustainability goals or objectives, and implementation of sustainability-based practices. They add that awareness precedes adoption of goals and objectives, while adoption precedes implementation of practices that can lead to TBL success. Based on this framework, the authors present a series of propositions for future research that empirical SSCM scholars can examine.

The next two articles address supply chain resilience and robustness. This is an important area of academic inquiry that has gained visibility in the aftermath of several highly publicized natural and man-made disasters. Supply chain disruptions are exacerbated by the complexity of current supply chains that span multiple companies and regions.

The first article in this series, by Hohenstein, Feisel, Hartmann, and Giunipero, offers a structured review of 67 peer-reviewed articles from 2003 to 2013. Based on their literature review, the authors define supply chain resilience (SCRES) as “the supply chain’s ability to be prepared for unexpected risk events, responding and recovering quickly to potential disruptions to return to its original situation or grow by moving to a new, more desirable state.” The authors note that a strong definition was absent in the extant literature and underline the criticality of establishing such a definition to facilitate additive empirical research. The authors adopt a philosophy that accepts that not all risks or disruptions can be avoided or prevented, and that consequently organizations must orchestrate proper responses that enable them to cope effectively with disruptions. Based on the literature review, SCRES elements can be grouped into proactive and reactive strategies; some of the strategies may be more appropriate ex-ante a disruption while other strategies may be more suitable ex-post a disruption. Relying on the literature, the authors also describe how supply chain resilience can be assessed and measured.

The authors draw on a variety of databases, such as EBSCO, ProQuest, ABI/Inform, Emerald, and others to identify potential articles while utilizing numerous keywords for search purposes. The search was limited to peer-reviewed journals to assure the quality of the papers that could be included in the review. Their search generated 209 papers but after closer examination and consideration of cited papers within the identified papers, 67 manuscripts were deemed appropriate for this research study. The review reveals that 75 percent of the articles were published between 2009 and 2013, suggesting that supply chain resilience is a very current topic. The majority of the papers (63 percent) are analytical (Pilbeam et al., 2012), with empirical papers accounting for 37 percent of the total.

The authors highlight that SCRES necessarily involves four phases: readiness, response, recovery, and growth. The readiness phase demands a proactive strategy while the response, recovery, and growth phases mandate a reactive strategy. The authors note that a great deal of attention has been focussed on the response and recovery phases. In contrast, studies that examine the readiness and growth phases are rather scarce.

A significant contribution that emerges from this literature review is the identification of 36 elements (aka antecedents, enhancers, or competencies) related to SCRES. In Table 4 of the manuscript, the authors present the top ten elements and include nuances such as flexibility, redundancy, collaboration, visibility, agility, multiple sourcing, capacity, culture, inventory, and information sharing. Some elements are found to assume more currency at the readiness phase (i.e. more proactive orientation) while other elements feature more prominently at the response, recovery, and growth phases (i.e. more reactive orientation). From a proactive-readiness perspective, organizations can use robustness measures that foster an ability to absorb sudden shocks and reduce the potential impact of disruptions. Such measures can include holding inventory, redundancy, and multiple sourcing. On the other hand, from a reactive perspective (reaction, recovery, and growth) organizations can utilize measures of reaction time to disruptions along with time estimates of recovery time to normal performance. The authors propose that SCRES can ultimately be measured via indicators of customer service, market share, and financial performance. The manuscript advances three propositions for future researchers to address.

The second article on supply chain resilience addresses robustness. In this manuscript Durach, Wieland, and Machuca offer a formal definition of supply chain robustness, advance a theoretical framework of robustness that includes antecedents and consequences, and demonstrate the practical utility of extant research findings. The authors used a panel of experts to devise keywords to guide a search of the literature and relied on two databases (i.e. EBSCO and ISI Web-of-knowledge) to locate pertinent articles. Based on several criteria, the number of articles was reduced from 1,482 to 94.

Robustness is defined as the “ability of a supply chain to resist or avoid change.” This definition implies two dimensions: resistance and avoidance. Both dimensions of robustness are examined in light of need for intra-organizational and inter-organizational robustness. Through a comprehensive review of the literature, the authors identify 62 variables that can either explain the ability of the supply chain to resist or avoid change (acting as antecedents to robustness) or may act as moderators affecting the effect sizes that describe relationships between robustness and its antecedents. Based on a Q-sorting exercise and further scrutiny, the authors identify four (i.e. leadership commitment, human capital, relationship magnitude, and risk management orientation) important intra-organizational robustness antecedents and four (i.e. node centrality, bargaining power, visibility, and network complexity) inter-organizational robustness antecedents. Furthermore, they note that uncertainty can moderate the relationships between robustness (resistance and avoidance) and its antecedents. The literature review reveals that while some antecedent factors and their respective roles have been extensively examined empirically many others have yet to be explored. Based on this observation, the authors also posit a series of propositions that can stimulate future research.

The first article on global supply chains authored by Olhager, Pashaei, and Sternberg, provides a structured literature review that is specific to the design of global production and distribution networks. The design aspects pertain to both strategic and structural decisions. The authors note that the design of production and distribution networks is an influential factor for competitiveness. Networks examined in extant studies may include suppliers, production facilities, distribution facilities, customers, and all transportation between nodes. Typical topics include the opening or closing of manufacturing plants or distribution centers, location selection for manufacturing or warehousing, and substantial capacity alterations in manufacturing or distribution.

Consistent with the prescriptions of Denyer and Tranfield (2009), Rousseau et al. (2008), Rowley and Slack (2004), and Seuring and Gold (2012), the authors rely on extant paradigms that explicate the process of performing systematic literature reviews. In total, their literature review relies on content from 109 articles published in peer-reviewed journals from 1974 to 2012. Three journals attracted the highest number of articles: International Journal of Physical Distribution and Logistics Management, International Journal of Production Research, and International Journal of Production Economics. The authors classify the contributions across four methodological domains: case studies, conceptual modeling, surveys, and mathematical modeling, noting that while contributions were sparse prior up to 2000, there is a positive trend from 2000 onwards. They also note that mathematical modeling papers are gaining momentum while case studies, conceptual modeling, and survey studies have remained relatively flat over the years.

Case study research accounts for 20 of the papers in the review and these studies primarily address the manufacturer perspective. The 16 conceptual modeling papers analyzed can be classified into two groups: some assume a SCM or operations management orientation, while others apply a “geographical” perspective on production and distribution networks. The 19 survey type papers include topics related to sourcing, manufacturing, and distribution and are primarily concerned with issues that are specific to the manufacturing firm. It is worth noting that the survey-based research examined tends not to use explicit control variables, which may have an adverse effect on the interpretation of respective findings.

The review also highlights the lack of replication studies. This suggests that researchers are pursuing new facets of global SCM in their inquiries rather than revisiting and validating existing aspects and studies. A great number of the studies (n=54) have a mathematical modeling orientation that includes manufacturing as well as transportation issues in a supply chain or network. These studies are primarily concerned with cost minimization and are used to identify “optimal facility locations, optimal capacity levels, and optimal sets of plants and warehouses at sites that can be opened and closed.” Based on the literature review, the authors conclude that location selection criteria and mathematical modeling have reached a maturity stage. Also, the authors point out that diverse methodologies have led to different perspectives on production and distribution networks. Finally, the authors advance an agenda for future research across four areas.

González-Loureiro, Dabi, and Kiessling present the second paper on global SCM. Their analysis identifies 3,402 articles published in 34 different journals from 1990 to July 2014. Their search included keywords such as “supply chain,” “strategy,” or “strategic management” and two databases were used: Social Science Citation Index and Scopus. The authors conducted correspondence analysis of these articles to generate an “intellectual structure of content.” The aim is to identify relevant theories from the strategic management domain that can serve as theoretical foundations for SCM research.

The authors use Wordstat 6.1 as the software of choice for content analysis. This process generated over 3,500 keywords; these are in essence descriptors that scholars have utilized in published articles. A multiple correspondence analysis ensued to find similar terms and help merge some others. Ultimately, 43 descriptors emerged from the analysis. These descriptors were then classified into categories based on prior SCM and strategy descriptions of the field. The authors identify seven key theoretical foundations from strategic management: transaction cost economics, agency theory, RBV, knowledge-based view, game theory, institutional theory, and entrepreneurship theory. Further analysis is split over two time periods (1990-1999 and 2000-2014). Table 3 of the manuscript presents the frequency and change between periods for the 43 descriptors.

The authors also develop a matrix of the intellectual structure of research on strategic SCM by using homogeneity analysis of variance by means of alternating least squares in SPSS. The dimensional map that emerges has two axes where positions represent a distance between pairs of keywords in terms of association. The Euclidian distance is used for calculation purposes and it is measured on a pairwise basis where the rows are articles/cases and the columns represent keywords/variables. In other words, if two descriptors are fairly proximal to each other it means that they appeared jointly in a relevant portion of a given manuscript. Descriptors that are more distant may reveal possible gaps in the literature. To make the matrix more interpretable, in Figure 1 of the manuscript, the poles are labeled based on the content of the more proximal descriptors. The four poles include agents and focal firm, distribution and logistics strategic models, SCM competitive requirements, and SCM relational governance and the authors identify specific theoretical foundations that are related to each pole.

The final article, authored by Habib, Bastl, and Pilbeam, examines buyer-supplier relationships but focusses on the actions that a “weaker” actor can adopt to counteract the power dominance of the stronger player. The two basic research questions pertain to the identification of options available for the weaker actor and documentation of factors that influence the choice of strategic options at the disposal of the weaker actor. The literature review identified 4,760 articles from 1980 to 2012 across five databases (Web-of-Science, Scopus, EBSCO, ProQuest, and Wiley-Blackwell). Through further elaboration and scrutiny, 48 studies focussing on dyads were retained for closer examination. The majority of these articles are empirical (39) while eight papers have an analytical orientation. In terms of distribution of “weak” actors, 15 papers study suppliers, 14 study buyers, eight study both, and 16 examine situations where an actor appears to be weaker in one relationship but stronger in another. The authors employ a spreadsheet to organize the content of each paper into three categories: descriptive, methodological, and thematic.

The findings illustrate that the weaker actor has five options available to counter the stronger actor’s power:

1. Collaboration – enhancing the importance of a weaker actor’s resources for the stronger actor.

2. Compromise – searching for a quick and mutually agreeable solution that partially satisfies both parties, while hoping that more mutual benefits will be attained by continuing the relationship.

3. Diversification – establishing one or more long-term relationships beyond the dyad.

4. Coalition – creating a temporary, means-oriented alliance among actors with different goals.

5. Exit – terminating the existing relationship. This can assume different formats such as silent exit, communicated exit, negotiated exit, and disguised exit.

The choice, however rests on a number of factors. The factors include the nature of interdependence (relative dependence between the two actors), relationship governance (institutional instruments or formal and informal mechanisms that govern inter-firm relationships), sources of power (mediated vis-á-vis non-mediated), switching costs (breakoff costs and setup costs), relationship closeness (level of trust and information sharing), available alternatives (number and quality of alternative partners).

The authors suggest that future research can examine each of the options in light of several influential factors by initially using a qualitative, multi-case approach. The authors also call for dyadic examinations from the perspectives of both actors: the weaker and the stronger and suggest that when the weaker actor engages a third-party provider, collecting data from the new network partner might also be worthwhile.

Conclusions

Although the research included in this special issue comprises a very partial view of the broad scope of existing literature on SCM and logistics, we want to highlight what we consider to be the best practices for conducting structured literature reviews in this particular field. Table I summarizes the practices that each of the eight teams have deployed while conducting their respective structured literature reviews. We believe that researchers interested in conducting structured literature reviews can benefit from our synthesis of these methods. While there is some commonality among the eight studies, there are also nuances that make each one of them unique.

Table I Summary of best practices for structured literature reviews

First of all, a systematic literature review process must connect relevant existing theories to develop future research agendas. This implies that the review process should be structured and stated in terms of particular and concrete final propositions that might be accompanied with visual representations of the intellectual structural maps as a final summary of the review. This is why robustness, focussed, structured, unbiased, or multi-dimensional, are all expected features of a well-conducted systematic literature review.

Most of the reviews in this special issue start with the selection of relevant descriptors in the field. For this particular purpose, a panel of recognized experts in the field can successfully guide a search of the literature. In determining the selection of databases and/or journals, different criteria can be deployed. Journal rankings seem to be a very suitable standard since they are purported to represent the impact of each journal’s contribution to the field. In the specific domain of SCM, due to the extensive and multi-disciplinary scope of the concept, other relevant complementary domains need to be integrated in order to be able to appropriately focus the study. Additionally, the definition of the unit of supply chain analysis in the search is important, ranging from the focal firm, intra- vs inter-organizational approach, dyadic, network approach, or a more holistic vision.

Researchers must also consider the role of relevant variables or elements that are extracted from the systematic literature review in the particular supply chain concept under examination. In that regard, it is important to analyze how these variables describe the emergent relationships, in terms of antecedents, moderators, mediators, or performance outcome roles that are especially pertinent in the SCM domain. The design aspects of the systematic review process might also consider contrasting both strategic, operational, or/and structural dimensions.

Interesting analysis for future research work is related to the classification of the contributions across the methodological domains, such as case studies (single or multi), surveys, conceptual modeling, and mathematical modeling. Positioning for the two prevailing research paradigms in the current panorama of SCM departments in universities (distinct groups of quantitative operations research approaches vs empirical methodologies) should also be considered. Sophisticated software may also faciliate literature reviews by enabling content analysis as an appropriate tool for quantifying the effects that emerge from the intellectual structure of the review, which can be then be combined with more classical statistical software tools, such as SPSS or Stata.

Finally, we would like to thank the wonderful group of reviewers, the esteemed authors, and the editor for accompanying us along this journey full of discoveries. We really hope that IJPDLM readers will benefit from the insights within this special issue. We also anticipate that these insights will encourage scholars to identify new gaps in the literature, raise new research questions, and conceptualize propositions for further investigation.

Professor Maria Jesus Saenz, Zaragoza Logistics Center, Zaragoza, Spain and Project Engineering Group, University of Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain

Dr Xenophon Koufteros, Mays Business School, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, USA

References

Carter, C.R. and Easton, P.L. (2011), “Sustainable supply chain management: evolution and future directions”, International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 41 No. 1, pp. 46-67

Carter, C.R. and Rogers, D.S. (2008), “A framework of sustainable supply chain management: moving toward new theory”, International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol. 38 No. 5, pp. 360-387

Denyer, D. and Tranfield, D. (2009), “Producing a systematic review”, in Buchanan, D. and Bryman, A. (Eds), The Sage Handbook of Organizational Research Methods, Chapter 39, Sage Publications Ltd, London, pp. 671-689

Koufteros, X., Verghese, A. and Lucianetti, L. (2014), “The effect of performance measurement system on firm performance: a cross-sectional and a longitudinal study”, Journal of Operations Management, Vol. 32 No. 6, pp. 313-336

Meredith, J. (1993), “Theory building through conceptual methods”, International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 13 No. 5, pp. 3-11

Pilbeam, C., Alvarez, G. and Wilson, H. (2012), “The governance of supply networks: a systematic literature review”, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, Vol. 17 No. 4, pp. 358-376

Rousseau, D.M., Manning, J. and Denyer, D. (2008), “Evidence in management and organizational science: assembling the field’s full weight of scientific knowledge through syntheses”, The Academy of Management Annals, Vol. 2 No. 1, pp. 475-515

Rowley, J. and Slack, F. (2004), “Conducting a literature review”, Management Research News, Vol. 27 No. 6, pp. 31-39

Seuring, S. and Gold, S. (2012), “Conducting content-analysis based literature reviews in supply chain management”, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, Vol. 17 No. 5, pp. 544-555

Seuring, S. and Müller, M. (2008), “Core issues in sustainable supply chain management – a Delphi study”, Business Strategy and the Environment, Vol. 17 No. 8, pp. 455-466

Smithey, I. (2012), “The craft of writing theory articles: variety and similarity in AMR”, Academy of Management Review, Vol. 37 No. 3, pp. 327-331

About the Guest Editors

Professor Maria Jesus Saenz is the Director of the Zaragoza Logistics Center, a research center part of the MIT Global Scale Network. Additionally, she is a Research Associate at the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics and Associate Professor in the School of Engineering at the University of Zaragoza. She is certified in Participant Centered Learning by the Harvard Business School. Dr Saenz’s research interests center on Inter-organizational Learning in Supply Chain Innovations and Global Supply Chain Risks. She has also conducted various research and development projects for companies on Supply Chain Management innovation, like Carrefour, Clariant, DHL, Leroy Merlin, or Caterpillar, among others. Dr Saenz is the co-author of several books on these subjects and has published a number of articles in leading international journals, such us Journal of Supply Chain Management, Journal of Business Research, or International Journal of Production Research, among others. Her research has been internationally awarded and has been cited in the media including Forbes, Financial Times Press, MIT-Sloan Management Review, America Economia, or Supply Chain Management Review. Professor Maria Jesus Saenz is the corresponding author and can be contacted at: mailto:mjsaenz@zlc.edu.es

Dr Xenophon Koufteros is the Jenna & Calvin R. Guest Professor in Business Administration at the Mays Business School at the Texas A&M University. He has published widely in journals such as Journal of Operations Management, Decision Sciences Journal, International Journal of Production Research, International Journal of Production Economics, Structural Equations Modeling Journal, International Journal of Operations and Production Management, and others. He is an Associate Editor of Journal of Operations Management, Decision Sciences Journal, Journal of Business Logistics, and Journal of Supply Chain Management and serves on the editorial board of Structural Equation Modeling Journal, Journal of Marketing Channels, and Educational & Psychological Measurement. His recent research interests pertain to the empirical study of supply chain security, disruptions, and risk management.

Related articles