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Article
Publication date: 16 August 2010

Seong‐Jong Joo, Hokey Min, Ik‐Whan G. Kwon and Heboong Kwon

The purpose of this paper is to illuminate light on the assessment of operating efficiency of specialty coffee retailers from the perspective of socially responsible

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to illuminate light on the assessment of operating efficiency of specialty coffee retailers from the perspective of socially responsible global sourcing. This paper evaluates the impact of socially responsible sourcing on the operating efficiencies of specialty coffee retailers before and after implementing fair‐trade practices and compares the operating efficiencies of fair‐trade coffee retailers to those of non‐fair‐trade coffee retailers.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper proposes data envelopment analysis (DEA) to measure the comparative efficiency of seven specialty coffee retailers, relative to prior periods and their key competitors. It develops the Charnes‐Cooper‐Rhodes (CCR) model that is designed to derive weights without their being fixed in advance. The CCR version of DEA is adopted to assess the impact of the coffee retailers' policy initiatives (i.e. fair‐trade practices) on their efficiency and measure the change over time (i.e. before and after fair‐trade practices) efficiency of the coffee retailers. As a post hoc DEA analysis, it also performs non‐parametric rank sum statistical tests for any discernable group differences between fair‐trade coffee retailers and non‐fair‐trade coffee retailers.

Findings

The study found that a group of coffee retailers committed to socially responsible sourcing (i.e. fair‐trade) practices tended to perform significantly better than the group which has yet to commit socially responsible sourcing practices with a concern over increased purchasing price. Also, it was found that a premium purchasing price paid to fair‐trade coffee beans did not undermine the coffee retailer's comparative operating efficiency despite its adverse impact on purchasing cost. In other words, a cost increase resulting from socially responsible business conducts might have been offset by the revenue increase resulting from favorable brand recognition attached to social responsibility.

Originality/value

This study is the first attempt to assess the impact of socially responsible sourcing practices on the multinational firms (MNFs) such as specialty coffee retailers' competitiveness and then investigate whether the MNF's commitment to socially responsible sourcing practices can be developed into its long‐term strategic weapon. In addition, it helps specialty coffee retailers formulate future global sourcing strategies by providing the detailed picture of how socially responsible sourcing can impact their competitiveness.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2005

Haesun Park and Leslie Stoel

Socially responsible buying/sourcing (SRB) has become a critical issue in many companies. The purpose of this study was to build an exploratory model to describe buying…

Abstract

Purpose

Socially responsible buying/sourcing (SRB) has become a critical issue in many companies. The purpose of this study was to build an exploratory model to describe buying/sourcing professionals' SRB decision‐making process.

Design/methodology/approach

Adopting business ethics and attitude theories, the SRB process was hypothesized to be a composite of cognitive processing and affective reactions to personal sources of information (e.g. peers). The mail survey data obtained from buying/sourcing professionals in the US apparel/shoe companies were analyzed using a Structural Equation Modeling technique.

Findings

SRB generally followed a cognitive decision framework and was partly influenced by the decision maker's affective reaction to peer buying/sourcing professionals' behaviors. Emotional reaction to top‐management, however, was not significant.

Research limitations/implications

The SRB scale created for this study is focused on the apparel/shoe buying context, which may limit its applicability to other industries. Also, SRB was measured through subjective perceptions of the respondents, which may be subject to some degree of social desirability bias.

Practical implications

The results suggest that changing the organizational environment where employees observe peers and providing standards of what is socially acceptable can improve SRB.

Originality/value

By employing individual decision makers as the unit of analysis, this study advances the field of ethical decision making by providing empirical evidence that SRB decisions are a product of both cognitive processing and emotional responses.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 33 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 5 January 2015

Marta Zorzini, Linda C. Hendry, Fahian Anisul Huq and Mark Stevenson

The purpose of this paper is to determine the state-of-the-art in socially responsible sourcing (SRS) research, leading to an agenda for further work; and to evaluate the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the state-of-the-art in socially responsible sourcing (SRS) research, leading to an agenda for further work; and to evaluate the use of theory in this context. SRS is defined as the upstream social issues within the sustainability literature, where social issues include human rights, community development and ethical issues but exclude environmental concerns.

Design/methodology/approach

A systematic literature review of 157 papers that include SRS published in ABS listed journals. The papers have been analysed according to their research content, with a particular focus on the use of pre-existing theories.

Findings

Key findings for researchers and managers alike include an analytical discussion of strategies developed to date to embed SRS in an organisation; and key research gaps include a particular need to consider the supplier perspective in developing countries. In terms of the use of theory, a typology is proposed, which (in ascending order of effectiveness) is as follows: theory dressing, theory matching, theory suggesting/explaining and theory expansion.

Research limitations/implications

The review is limited to papers published in the ABS list; and the analysis of the use of theory is limited to the SRS literature. The findings suggest that insightful papers can be written without any use of theory but that as a field develops, a greater depth of application of theory is needed to aid understanding.

Originality/value

This is the only review that focuses exclusively on social issues SRS, excluding environmental issues, thus allowing for a greater depth of discussion on social issues; and is unique in its detailed critical analysis of the use of theory.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 35 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 8 March 2011

Helen Goworek

The purpose of this paper is to assess the issues currently involved in social and environmental sustainability in the clothing industry.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the issues currently involved in social and environmental sustainability in the clothing industry.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper adopts a case study approach to investigate a business that operates successfully in this challenging market.

Findings

As a consequence of increasing demand for ethical clothing, it has become standard practice for UK clothing retailers to develop CSR policies which impact upon their methods of garment sourcing and partnerships with suppliers. There is also a significant trend for retailers to offer ethical clothing ranges made from organic cotton or produced by Fair Trade manufacturers. The paper includes a case study on People Tree, which sells Fair Trade clothing sourced from developing countries. People Tree is rare amongst clothing companies in that it provides customers with a transparent view of its production sources via the internet. The company provides an example of how socially responsible and environmentally sustainable global sourcing can be applied in practice.

Research limitations/implications

The study focuses on aspects of sustainability in an individual retailer. This could be extended to other ethical retailers in different countries, and a longitudinal study of such companies could be conducted.

Originality/value

Literature on ethical fashion companies and their use of socially responsible strategies is sparse, and there is a lack of research that covers both social and environmental sustainability in this market. This paper fills some of the gaps.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 26 August 2020

Matthias Damert, Lisa Koep, Edeltraud Guenther and Jonathan Morris

The purpose of this study is to examine how the pressures from stakeholders located in company's country of origin and level of internationalization of the company…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine how the pressures from stakeholders located in company's country of origin and level of internationalization of the company influence the implementation of socially responsible supply chain management (SR-SCM) practices.

Design/methodology/approach

To assess this level of influence, an SR-SCM performance index is developed by building on existing theoretical frameworks and using secondary data from ThomsonReuters’ WorldScope and ASSET4 databases to capture responsible supply chain actions categorized in communication, compliance and supplier development strategies. The analysis is based on 1,252 international companies from diverse countries and sectors between 2007 and 2016.

Findings

The effectiveness of stakeholder pressures in facilitating the adoption of socially responsible practices varies greatly with regard to the strategic element of SR-SCM and the type stakeholders considered. Companies that are more internationalized tend to adopt a greater number of SR-SCM practices, whereas home country stakeholders are of diminishing relevance with the increasing internationalization of a company.

Practical implications

Governments in companies’ countries of origin should ensure that social issues in supply chains are adequately covered by regulations. Ideally, laws should not only cover firms’ domestic operations but also their global activities.

Social implications

Citizens should be given the opportunities to raise their voice and publicly express their disagreement with business misconduct and non-compliance. Apart from that, the role of workers’ associations and investors in the social sustainability debate should be strengthened.

Originality/value

This study contributes to SR-SCM theory development by operationalizing existing conceptual frameworks, showing how domestic stakeholders shape SR-SCM performance and analyzing whether the influence of certain stakeholder groups diminishes or increases when a company is more globally-oriented in its operations.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

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Article
Publication date: 7 April 2015

Adrien Bouchet, Mike Troilo and William Spaniel

The purpose of this paper is to explore the question: how does socially responsible buying/sourcing applies to human talent? The authors examine this question in the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the question: how does socially responsible buying/sourcing applies to human talent? The authors examine this question in the unique context of Major League Baseball’s (MLB) relationship with the “buscones” (agents) representing prospects from the Dominican Republic.

Design/methodology/approach

Using game theory, the authors model how MLB teams create rules to curb unethical behavior within the supply chain. The principal relationship the authors will model is that of the franchises and the prospects. This relationship has as its core an investment decision by the individual franchises: should they incur costs to ameliorate the context in which the prospects find themselves, or not? The costs of investment, whether it is in academies, general education, a revision of recruiting policies or something else, must be weighed against the negative externalities that are likely to result if the exploitation of the DR recruits becomes common knowledge to other stakeholders, particularly the public.

Findings

The model shows that when investments are roughly evenly distributed, the teams successfully vote to outlaw unethical behaviors and thus collectively avoid the negative externalities. However, when investments are asymmetric, the teams invested in the current system vote against a ban to maintain a competitive edge, even though the system imposes costs on all of those involved.

Originality/value

This paper serves as the initial paper that examines international sourcing, social responsibility and baseball. As international sport clubs/franchises continue to source athletic talent from around the globe, the issues discussed in the paper are both original and pertinent.

Details

Corporate Governance, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-0701

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Maisam Abbasi

The purpose of this article is to explore and classify the pattern of themes and challenges in developing socially sustainable supply chains.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to explore and classify the pattern of themes and challenges in developing socially sustainable supply chains.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology is based on a systematic review of the peer-reviewed literature to explore what major themes and challenges have been discussed and the significant gaps where opportunities for further research can be found.

Findings

In total, four categories of themes were identified, namely, human-centric, focal organization-centric, supply chain-centric and governance-centric. Challenges were classified into seven categories, namely, inadequate and asymmetric knowledge, difficulties of operationalization, shifting the values, subjectivity in evaluation, governance complexity, difficulties of small- and medium-sized enterprises and sustainability fade.

Research limitations/implications

The focus of the article is on the social pillar of sustainable development in the context of supply chains. A more holistic systematic investigation of synergy of all the three pillars/bottom lines of sustainable development (economic, environmental and social) can be an opportunity for further research.

Practical implications

Taking a more holistic view of the pattern of currently discussed themes and challenges may be beneficial in increasing the absorptive capacity of industrial and business practitioners, by accumulating and assimilating external knowledge, when they design and operationalize innovative strategies in developing sustainable supply chains.

Originality/value

This article may increase awareness about the social responsibilities of supply chains actors and stakeholders in different scales. It may also guide managers, decision makers and practitioners to better understand the difficulties, obstacles or dilemmas that can hinder the sustainable development of supply chains. The results section presents a framework driven from the emerged themes, and the discussion section provides propositions for tackling the challenges and opportunities for further research.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 29 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 19 April 2013

Stefan Hoejmose, Stephen Brammer and Andrew Millington

This paper aims to explore the effect of business strategy on socially responsible supply chain management (SR‐SCM).

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the effect of business strategy on socially responsible supply chain management (SR‐SCM).

Design/methodology/approach

This study draws on data from 178 UK‐based companies, and 340 buyer‐supplier relationships. A novel data collection approach is used, which minimizes social desirability and common methods bias, to capture socially responsible supply chain management. The data are analysed through a set of OLS regressions.

Findings

Business strategies significantly influence socially responsible supply chain management. Low‐cost producers largely neglect their social responsibilities in the supply chain. In contrast, firms pursuing differentiation strategies are considerably more engaged with these issues, partly because they have better supply chain processes.

Practical implications

Practitioners should carefully consider the fit between strategic position and level of engagement with SR‐SCM, since our results emphasise the relationship between SR‐SCM and business strategy. Proactive engagement with SR‐SCM, however, also implies sound supply chain processes, which must also be aligned with business strategy. Policy‐makers should consider the low engagement with SR‐SCM of low‐cost producers and the implications for SR‐SCM in cost sensitive and competitive global markets.

Originality/value

This is the first systematic cross‐sectional study of the relationship between business strategy and socially responsible supply chain management (SR‐SCM). These results suggest that there is a clear relationship between the strategic position of the firm and their SR‐SCM practices. These results contribute to the on‐going debate on relationships between strategy and supply chain management, and the emerging debate on the relationships between strategy and SR‐SCM.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 33 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 October 2019

Yan Jiang, Fu Jia, Constantin Blome and Lujie Chen

This paper aims to set out the development, based on the extant literature, an integrated conceptual framework for the emergent field of sustainable global sourcing (GS…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to set out the development, based on the extant literature, an integrated conceptual framework for the emergent field of sustainable global sourcing (GS) that synthesizes its antecedents, GS practices and sustainable performance.

Design/methodology/approach

Conceptual theory building combined with content analysis is used to develop a framework and propositions representing a middle-range theory of sustainable GS. A literature review of the 89 most influential papers is followed by a further discussion based on the resource orchestration perspective (ROP) to advance an integrated conceptual framework.

Findings

Three main themes are identified from the literature as antecedents, GS practices and sustainable performance, with each theme being detailed in a variety of constructs. Based on the ROP, the relationships between these constructs are revealed, and therefore, an integrated conceptual framework is advanced via three sets of propositions in recourse orchestration breadth, recourse orchestration depth and resource orchestration evolution, respectively. Eight directions for future research are further proposed.

Originality/value

First, this study provides a comprehensive framework for future study in the emergent field of sustainable GS. Second, the authors contribute to theory development by proposing a ROP to explore the GS practices towards sustainability. Third, the future research directions we proposed can benefit scholars interested in the overlapping areas of GS and sustainability.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 24 April 2013

Stefan Ulstrup Hoejmose, Johanne Grosvold and Andrew Millington

The purpose of this study is to analyse the role of relational power/dependent asymmetries and symmetries in shaping socially responsible supply chain management, whilst…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to analyse the role of relational power/dependent asymmetries and symmetries in shaping socially responsible supply chain management, whilst also examining how these issues are moderated by geographical distance between buyer and supplier.

Design/methodology/approach

The study draws on data from 339 buyer‐supplier relationships, and the authors use a set of regression models to test their hypotheses.

Findings

Joint dependency positively influences socially responsible supply chain management, whilst supplier power constrains it. Both joint dependency and buyer power become increasingly important determinants of socially responsible supply chain management as geographic distance increases.

Research limitations/implications

Further work is needed to examine the conditions under which organisations will exercise their power advantage or their joint dependence position to improve socially responsible processes in the supply chain, as there may be situations where the buyer chooses not to exercise their power positions.

Practical implications

The authors' results indicate that jointly dependent relationships create the best conditions for socially responsible supply chain management, but they also find that supplier power advantage can constrain such initiatives.

Originality/value

This is the first paper to systematically analyse the implementation of socially responsible supply chain management, within a model that considers power a/symmetric positions of the buyer‐supplier relationship, and the role of geographical distance as a moderating influence on these power positions.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

Keywords

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