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Article
Publication date: 28 September 2021

Sneha Kumari, V.G. Venkatesh, Eric Deakins, Venkatesh Mani and Sachin Kamble

Agriculture value chains (AVCs) have experienced unprecedented disruption during the COVID-19 pandemic, with lockdowns and stringent social distancing restrictions making…

Abstract

Purpose

Agriculture value chains (AVCs) have experienced unprecedented disruption during the COVID-19 pandemic, with lockdowns and stringent social distancing restrictions making buying and selling behaviours complex and uncertain. This study aims provide a theoretical framework describing the stakeholder behaviours that arise in severely disrupted value chains, which give rise to inter-organisational initiatives that impact industry sustainability.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed-methods approach is adopted, in which uncertainty theory and relational governance theory and structured interviews with 15 AVC stakeholders underpin the initial conceptual model. The framework is empirically validated via partial least squares structural equation modelling using data from an online survey of 185 AVC stakeholders based in India.

Findings

The findings reveal that buyer and supplier uncertainty created by the COVID-19 lockdowns gives rise to behaviours that encourage stakeholders to engage in relational governance initiatives. Progressive farmers and other AVC stakeholders welcome this improved information sharing, which encourages self-reliance that positively impacts agricultural productivity and sustainability.

Practical implications

The new framework offers farmers and other stakeholders in developing nations possibilities to sustain their AVCs even in dire circumstances. In India, this also requires an enabling ecosystem to enhance smallholders' marketing power and help them take advantage of recent agricultural reforms.

Originality/value

Research is scarce into the impact of buyer and seller behaviour during extreme supply chain disruptions. This study applies relational governance and uncertainty theories, leading to a proposed risk aversion theory.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 4 June 2020

V.G. Venkatesh, Abraham Zhang, Eric Deakins and Venkatesh Mani

Tragic incidents such as the Rana Plaza building collapse call into question the value and effectiveness of supplier codes of conduct (SCC) used in multi-tier supply…

Abstract

Purpose

Tragic incidents such as the Rana Plaza building collapse call into question the value and effectiveness of supplier codes of conduct (SCC) used in multi-tier supply chains. This paper aims to investigate the barriers to sub-supplier compliance and the drivers from the perspective of suppliers that adopt a double agency role by complying with buyer-imposed SCC while managing sub-supplier compliance on behalf of the buyer.

Design/methodology/approach

This research adopts a sequential, mixed-methods approach. The qualitative phase develops a conceptual model with the aid of the extant the literature and semi-structured interviews with 24 senior manufacturing professionals. The quantitative phase then uses a hierarchical regression analysis to test the conceptual model using survey data from 159 apparel suppliers based in India.

Findings

The findings reveal that sub-supplier compliance is positively impacted by effective buyer–supplier governance and by the focal supplier having a strategic partnership with the sub-supplier. Conversely, price pressure on sub-suppliers adversely impacts their compliance, while institutional pressure on them to comply is generally ineffective.

Research limitations/implications

The context of the study is limited to the garment industry in India.

Practical implications

To improve SCC compliance rates, buyers and focal suppliers should actively develop strategic partnerships with selected upstream supply chain actors; should set a reasonable price across the supply chain; and, should include specific sub-supplier compliance requirements within the supply contract. The findings also suggest the need to develop social sustainability protocols that are cognisant of regional contexts.

Originality/value

The absence of prior research on SCC implementation by sub-suppliers, this study represents a pioneering empirical study into such multi-tier sourcing arrangements. It provides strong support that sub-supplier governance arrangements differ from those typically found in the focal supplier layer. It also provides empirical evidence of the critical factors that encourage sub-supplier compliance within the apparel industry of a regionally developing economy.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 October 2016

Thi Thanh Huong Tran, Paul Childerhouse and Eric Deakins

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how managers perceive risks associated with sharing information with trading partners, and how they attempt to mitigate them.

4041

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how managers perceive risks associated with sharing information with trading partners, and how they attempt to mitigate them.

Design/methodology/approach

In this exploratory New Zealand study, qualitative research was conducted involving semi-structured interviews with boundary spanning managers who are responsible for inter-organizational interfaces. Multiple case studies in different industries are used to highlight managers’ perceptions of risks in data exchange process throughout the supply network, and their underlying reasoning.

Findings

Managers perceive several types of risks when exchanging information across external supply chain interfaces, and adopt different approaches to handling them. The research also reinforces the vital role played by interpersonal relationships and trust as key enablers of inter-organizational cooperation.

Research limitations/implications

The findings are based on a small sample of 11 case companies based in a single New Zealand province, thereby potentially restricting generalizability. Future work could usefully extend the sample size in order to investigate the correlations between firm sizes, levels of trust, and degrees of data integration within particular industry sectors.

Practical implications

The findings will help managers understand and evaluate different types of risks in the data exchange process, and enable them to make better decisions that enhance information sharing and supply chain performance.

Originality/value

Perceived information sharing risks are peculiar to the individual actors, and as such need to be mitigated through changes to their socially constructed perceptions. This work extends the literature on understanding the various dimensions of inter-organizational information sharing.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 27 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 January 2006

Eric Deakins and Stuart Dillon

Broadly conceptualised, a consultant's work can be evaluated by the deliverables produced and by the process used to achieve those deliverables. This paper seeks to report…

2435

Abstract

Purpose

Broadly conceptualised, a consultant's work can be evaluated by the deliverables produced and by the process used to achieve those deliverables. This paper seeks to report the use of a survey instrument to assess and compare management consultant process performance and client performance (in specifying the contract), enabling meaningful dialogue between the parties.

Design/methodology/approach

A validated instrument, previously developed by the authors, was employed to survey all local and regional authorities in New Zealand regarding the expectations they have of their management consultants and their perceptions of process performance. Congruence of the performance profiles was assessed with the aid of profile similarity indices.

Findings

While results for the sector indicate that New Zealand local authorities appear to be generally well satisfied with the levels of service they are receiving from their management consultants, individual authorities are experiencing significant gaps between their expectations and what is being delivered. In addition, misalignments between client expectations and benchmark process performance measures indicate a lack of rigour when specifying contracts.

Research limitations/implications

The research makes use of subjective measures of excellent consulting practice sourced from industry‐respected consultants and authors in the field, rather than attempting to justify their choice from a theoretical basis. Conceptual difficulties with the use of profile similarity indices in alignment research are noted. The generalisability of the benchmark performance standards to consultants operating in other sectors remains to be tested.

Practical implications

Benchmark consultant performance standards provide the basis for local authorities to insist upon internationally recognized and recommended standards of contract delivery. The use of well‐developed process performance measures to assess differences between local authority expectations and perceived consultant performance, and between perceived consultant performance and benchmark expectations, provides the opportunity for local authorities and their consultants to engage in meaningful and objective dialogue. Skilled consultants will benefit from dialogue that should translate into greater respect and understanding of their true worth, and into the setting of contract specifications and pricing that reflect this assessment.

Originality/value

Previous authors have argued the lack of well‐developed performance measures and attendant benchmark performance standards expected of consultants. The present study directly addresses these gaps and focuses on the manner in which management consultants work with public sector clients to produce contract deliverables. Validated benchmark measures are used to detect process performance gaps, providing the opportunity for local authorities and their consultants to engage in meaningful dialogue.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 September 2002

Eric Deakins and Stuart M. Dillon

In New Zealand (NZ) there are plans afoot to create an e‐government that will automate government‐to‐government and government‐to‐citizen interactions and allow anyone…

4325

Abstract

In New Zealand (NZ) there are plans afoot to create an e‐government that will automate government‐to‐government and government‐to‐citizen interactions and allow anyone, anywhere to go online any time to obtain information, to complete transactions, and to communicate with their elected representatives, cheaply, quickly, and efficiently. A total of 16 key issues, which various authors argue are critical to the success of USA e‐government initiatives, are described and evaluated in light of the NZ e‐government environment. The significance afforded to these issues by NZ local authority e‐government policymakers when they implement their own e‐government initiatives suggests that eight of the issues are considered significant, four are not considered significant, and four remain inconclusive at this time. Of the key issues, six are not well understood. It is also concluded that NZ local authorities are at an early evolutionary stage of e‐government development.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 15 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 August 2010

Eric Deakins, Stuart Dillon, Hamed Al Namani and Chao (Kevin) Zhang

The purpose of this paper is to provide a picture of (local) e‐government impact and development philosophy in China, New Zealand, Oman, and the UK.

2187

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a picture of (local) e‐government impact and development philosophy in China, New Zealand, Oman, and the UK.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey instrument was used to collect data from policymakers in 114 civil service organisations in four countries during 2007.

Findings

Policymakers in every country report only low‐medium levels of agreement that their e‐government initiatives had yielded significant benefits for organisations and citizens alike over a broad range of performance measures concerning service quality, citizen satisfaction, productivity, and management effectiveness. In interactions with stakeholders that are both directive and maintain control over citizens, policymakers also favour the provision of online services that offer ever increasing amounts of information, rather than collaborative service channels that engage citizens in local decision making.

Research limitations/implications

Less than a 100‐percent response rate gives an incomplete snapshot of the e‐government scene in the four countries studied. Also, a lack of understanding of some key e‐government issues plus cultural response bias may have led to erroneous/biased responses.

Practical implications

In an era in which public sector organisations worldwide are under pressure to demonstrate success in service delivery and organisational performance, policymakers do not perceive online services as an opportunity to reduce the costs of physical infrastructure or to improve democracy via shared decision‐making. Thus, further erosions of trust and participation in democracy may continue unless citizens are given similar choices in the democratic system to those they have in their everyday lives.

Originality/value

The paper is undertaken at the local level of government and in a diverse range of countries where the political, social, economic, and cultural environments can differ markedly. It evaluates the significance of key e‐government issues in Western, Arabic, and Eastern contexts, enabling international comparisons to be made across these cultural settings. Impacts of the e‐government initiatives on organisations and citizens are presented and compared; and policymaker attitudes to new technology having the potential to enhance the democratic process are presented.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 23 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 January 2011

Eric Chan and Anthony Mills

The purpose of this paper is to summarize the scope, methodology and main findings of a doctoral thesis about the implementation of enterprise resource planning (ERP…

2291

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to summarize the scope, methodology and main findings of a doctoral thesis about the implementation of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software in a major construction contracting organization in Hong Kong. This research is taken from a leadership and power and project management (PM) perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

The project adopted a case study approach in which the candidate was an employee/observer, who was embedded as a member of the business transformation team taking an action learning approach to study the ERP adoption. The research used the soft system methodology to identify gaps in the observed maturity level which exists in the organization. Data was gathered using public and private documentation, semi‐structured interviews, observation and was validated through review of evidence with participants.

Findings

The results identified the importance of leadership and cultural issues in implementation of the business strategy. This research includes a contribution in two spheres: PM and construction procurement. The first implication for PM theory was to illustrate how knowledge has been efficiently managed within a construction organization by using information communication technology (ICT). It can be represented by the ladder of ICT>ERP>KM>PM. The second implication was to pave the way for the use of partnering strategies in PM practice. It can be represented by the ladder of National Culture>Organizational Culture>Leadership>Partnering Strategy>PM.

Practical implications

This model could be adapted to other large and complex organisational contexts. The research project also has implications as opening up a PM perspective on business transformation.

Originality/value

The contribution of this research is proving the success of adopting KM in a construction company by using an ERP system. The importance of culture in the traditionally collectivistic construction industry, and the issues senior management should take into account when formulating business strategies.

Details

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, vol. 4 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8378

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 June 1975

Britain's newly acquired skills in oil exploration are being eagerly courted by China, who wants to build up her own oil industry to offset a hefty trade deficit. Report…

Abstract

Britain's newly acquired skills in oil exploration are being eagerly courted by China, who wants to build up her own oil industry to offset a hefty trade deficit. Report by John Howard.

Details

Industrial Management, vol. 75 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-6929

Article
Publication date: 13 May 2014

Tillmann Böhme, Sharon Williams, Paul Childerhouse, Eric Deakins and Denis Towill

– The purpose of this paper is to use a systems lens to assess the comparative performance of healthcare supply chains and provide guidance for their improvement.

1860

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to use a systems lens to assess the comparative performance of healthcare supply chains and provide guidance for their improvement.

Design/methodology/approach

A well-established and rigorous multi-method audit methodology, based on the uncertainty circle model, yields an objective assessment of value stream performance in eight Australasian public sector hospitals. Cause-effect analysis identifies the major barriers to achieving smooth, seamless flows. Potentially high-leverage remedial actions identified using systems thinking are examined with the aid of an exemplar case.

Findings

The majority of the healthcare value streams studied are underperforming compared with those in the European automotive industry. Every public hospital appears to be caught in the grip of vicious circles of system uncertainty, in large part being caused by problems of their own making. The single exception is making good progress towards seamless functional integration, which has been achieved by elevating supply chain management to a core competence; having a clearly articulated supply chain vision; adopting a systems approach; and, managing supplies with accurate information.

Research limitations/implications

The small number of cases limits the generalisability of the findings at this time.

Practical implications

Hospital supply chain managers endeavouring to achieve smooth and seamless supply flows should attempt to elevate the status of supplies management within their organisation to that of a core competence, and should use accurate information to manage their value streams holistically as a set of interwoven processes. A four-level prism model is proposed as a useful framework for thus improving healthcare supply delivery systems.

Originality/value

Material flow concepts originally developed to provide objective assessments of value stream performance in commercial settings are adapted for use in a healthcare setting. The ability to identify exemplar organisations via a context-free uncertainty measure, and to use systems thinking to identify high-leverage solutions, supports the transfer of appropriate best practices even between organisations in dissimilar business and economic settings.

Details

Journal of Health Organization and Management, vol. 28 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7266

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 May 2016

James Aitken, Paul Childerhouse, Eric Deakins and Denis Towill

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the differences and similarities between the manufacturing and services sectors in order to develop a methodology that can…

1673

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the differences and similarities between the manufacturing and services sectors in order to develop a methodology that can provide the opportunity for the transfer of best practice between the two sectors. This paper aims to describe an audit methodology capable of yielding objective comparisons of supply chain integration performance that can assist practitioners and academics to transfer learned solutions.

Design/methodology/approach

A robust, site-based, multi-method supply chain diagnostic for detecting manufacturing supply chain system uncertainty was amended for the service sector in order to yield objective comparisons of the (normalised) supply chain integration performances of 119 organisations.

Findings

The research confirms the value of using a lens enabled by the uncertainty circle model (UCM) for generating meaningful comparative supply chain performances. The research found that services do not always exhibit unique attributes which effectively bar manufacturing-based supply chain best practice from being adopted within the service sector.

Originality/value

Combining the UCM and Quick Scan Audit Methodology approach has the potential to assist the spread of proven good practice across both sectors. The framework provides realistic and repeatable performance vectors, capable of aligning estimates of value stream health status even when comparing supply chains with differing objectives, configurations, and performance goals.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

Keywords

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