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Motives, processes and practices of sustainable sourcing: a literature review

Sudhir Ambekar (School of General Management, National Institute of Construction Management and Research-Pune, Pune, India)
Rohit Kapoor (Department of Operations Management and Quantitative Techniques, Indian Institute of Management Indore, Indore, India)
Anand Prakash (School of General Management, National Institute of Construction Management and Research-Pune, Pune, India)
Vishal Singh Patyal (School of General Management, National Institute of Construction Management and Research-Pune, Pune, India)

Journal of Global Operations and Strategic Sourcing

ISSN: 2398-5364

Article publication date: 11 September 2018

Issue publication date: 14 February 2019

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to attempt to examine pressures, incentives, processes and practices used for sustainable sourcing. Further, it also proposes a framework to provide a composite method for monitoring and controlling the sustainability aspects of supply management. This would enable suppliers to consider buyers’ requirements, translate these into suitable strategies, assess suppliers’ capabilities and also judge the impact of these strategies on suppliers.

Design/methodology/approach

This study opts for literature review as a method. In total, 150 research papers in peer-reviewed English language journals were reviewed to examine the pressures, incentives, processes and practices used for sustainable sourcing.

Findings

This study attempts to answer the “why”-, “what”- and “how”-related questions about sustainable sourcing. It is observed that research in sustainable sourcing is multileveled and involves various functional departments in a firm. It is diverse and fragmented and is more concentrated on certain geographic areas, industries and methodologies.

Practical implications

This study can be helpful to both researchers and practicing managers. It provides a snapshot of the work done on sustainable sourcing, which can be used as a base for research addressing specific aspects of sustainable sourcing or for building strategies related to sustainable sourcing.

Originality/value

This study takes the present reviews available in the literature forward and provides a generic view of sustainable sourcing and proposes a composite method for monitoring and controlling the sustainability aspects of supply management. It attempts to consolidate the diverse literature presently available on sustainable sourcing.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank the anonymous referees and the editor for their valuable feedback, which significantly improved the positioning and presentation of this paper. The authors are also thankful to Dr Amit Hiray who painstakingly copy-edited the manuscript.

Citation

Ambekar, S., Kapoor, R., Prakash, A. and Patyal, V.S. (2019), "Motives, processes and practices of sustainable sourcing: a literature review", Journal of Global Operations and Strategic Sourcing, Vol. 12 No. 1, pp. 2-41. https://doi.org/10.1108/JGOSS-11-2017-0046

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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