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The role of digital technologies in supply chain resilience for emerging markets’ automotive sector

Balakrishnan A.S. (Department of Material Planning and Logistics, Ford Motor Private Limited, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India)
Usha Ramanathan (Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK)

Supply Chain Management

ISSN: 1359-8546

Article publication date: 4 August 2021

Issue publication date: 6 September 2021




The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of digital supply chain (DSC) technologies in automotive supply chain resilience (SCR) practices to improve the supply chain performance (SC-Perf.) objectives of companies operating in the automotive industry. This study also compares the results of the associated SC-Perf objectives before and after the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak lockdown situation.


The authors undertook in-depth empirical research using a questionnaire survey to explore the performance of automotive supply chains. The sample for this study consisted of practitioners from supply chain entities such as automotive original equipment manufacturers, Tier-1 component manufacturers and lead logistics providers in Asia-Pacific (AP) emerging markets. Research questions, framework and hypotheses were developed using the literature review.


The research outcome from analysis of the data the authors collected from an emerging market context, specifically the automotive sector, emphasizes the role of DSC technologies and encourages the firm’s SCR practices which, in turn, supports the SC-Perf objectives. The DSC technologies competency moderates the SCR and SC-Perf objectives relation, and the moderation effect is higher for post-COVID-19 pandemic outbreak lockdown situation than at prior state.

Research limitations/implications

The scope of the study is restricted to the automotive firms in the AP region. The data were collected from a representative sample of the population through a questionnaire survey. The small size of the sample incurs a certain level of subjectivity.

Practical implications

This research provides practical insights for practitioners and academicians on DSC technologies’ influence in SCR practices to improve the firm’s SC-Perf. This research shares the literature insights on use of DSC technologies across the sector to allow the automotive firm to reassess the existing operational practices.


The paper adds insights on introducing or implementing DSC technologies across AP automotive firms to increase the operations’ performance by improving SCR practices and sustainability.



A.S., B. and Ramanathan, U. (2021), "The role of digital technologies in supply chain resilience for emerging markets’ automotive sector", Supply Chain Management, Vol. 26 No. 6, pp. 654-671.



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