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Creating a sustainable supply chain network by adopting relationship management strategies


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Rezaei Vandchali, H ORCID: 0000-0003-4109-3314, Cahoon, S ORCID: 0000-0001-5763-8409 and Chen, S-L ORCID: 0000-0002-1513-4365 2020 , 'Creating a sustainable supply chain network by adopting relationship management strategies' , Journal of Business-To-Business Marketing, vol. 27, no. 2 , pp. 125-149 , doi: 10.1080/1051712X.2020.1748354.

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Purpose:This paper develops a conceptual framework to analyse the impact of a supply chain network (SCN) structure on relationship management strategies (RMS) that focal firms apply to manage sustainability issues within the SCN.Design/methodology/approach:This paper is based on a comprehensive review and analysis of the industrial marketing and purchasing (IMP), sustainable supply chain management (SSCM), and SCN literature.Findings:The conceptual framework expands the network perspective in the SSCM context by considering the important role of the SCN structure in the firm’s decision-making process. Four factors (dependency, distance, power, and transparency) were found that are useful in conceptualising the SCN structure. The conceptual framework also categorises various sustainability practices into four RMS (non-compliance, transactional, dictatorial, and collaborative), which are needed to make a SCN more sustainable. In addition, 16 propositions are developed based on how firms may identify the most effective RMS to implement appropriate sustainability practices through examining their SCN structure.Research limitations/implications:The conceptual framework, developed as a result of a comprehensive review of the literature, led to the development of 16 propositions, which can assist in furthering a research agenda on RMS to diffuse various sustainability practices within SCN structures.Originality/value:The relationship between SCN structure and RMS in the sustainability context remains an under-researched but emerging area of interest. This paper leverages existing research to develop a conceptual framework suitable for empirical testing.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Rezaei Vandchali, H and Cahoon, S and Chen, S-L
Keywords: supply chain network structure, sustainable supply chain management, relationship management strategies, industrial marketing relationships, sustainability practices
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Business-To-Business Marketing
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1051-712X
DOI / ID Number: 10.1080/1051712X.2020.1748354
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2019 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in Journal of Business-To-Business Marketing on 12/05/2020, available online:

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