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Meeting needs: value chain collaboration in stabilisation and reconstruction operations

Sebastiaan Rietjens (Faculty of Military Sciences, Netherlands Defence Academy, Breda, The Netherlands)
John Goedee (Department of Organization Studies, Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands)
Stijn Van Sommeren (Department of Organization Studies, Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands)
Joseph Soeters (Faculty of Military Sciences, Netherlands Defence Academy, Breda, The Netherlands and Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands)

Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management

ISSN: 2042-6747

Article publication date: 6 May 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

From the perspective of value chains, the purpose of this paper is to analyse the organization of stabilization and reconstruction operations, most notably in Afghanistan, with the intention to improve the way the beneficiaries are involved.

Design/methodology/approach

Case study: the paper first develops a theoretical framework that draws upon value chain literature. To gather empirical data fieldwork was done within the Dutch provincial reconstruction team (PRT) in Afghanistan. Methods that were used include interviews, participatory observation and desk study.

Findings

In the value chain process six steps are identified: early warning, file and analysis, appraisal/qualification, assignment/management, execution and evaluation. Different categories of personnel (military, reservists, civilians) bring with them different backgrounds. This led to different opinions on who can be considered as the customer of the value chain. Moreover, personnel received different signals in the early warning step as to what needed to be done. From there on, different values and perspectives developed during the sequence of the various stages in the value chain that were not easily aligned. The formal structure of the work activities in the PRT was clear but did not match with the everyday reality. This showed another, much more fuzzy picture. Many mutual contacts were needed to overcome the coordination problems, but that required considerable additional efforts.

Originality/value

The paper applies value chain literature to stabilization and reconstruction operations and focuses on the customers. It uses unique data and demonstrates the usefulness of a multidisciplinary approach.

Keywords

Citation

Rietjens, S., Goedee, J., Van Sommeren, S. and Soeters, J. (2014), "Meeting needs: value chain collaboration in stabilisation and reconstruction operations", Journal of Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management, Vol. 4 No. 1, pp. 43-59. https://doi.org/10.1108/JHLSCM-10-2012-0029

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited