Supply Chain vs. Supply Chain Competition

Many theory-testing efforts in our field are made by borrowing theories from other fields (e.g., transaction cost economics or resource-based theory), adapting them to a supply chain context and deriving hypotheses that are eventually tested statistically. By doing so, we have reached a lot! But we also need our own theories. For example, several years ago, Lambert & Cooper (2000) noted: “One of the most significant paradigm shifts of modern business management is that individual businesses no longer compete as solely autonomous entities, but rather as supply chains”. So, part of our theoretical toolkit could be a theory of supply chain vs. supply chain competition which could explain how the supply chains of Apple and Samsung interact. However, surprisingly few attempts have been made towards such a theory. This includes a thought piece by Rice & Hoppe (2001) and, more recently, a case study by Antai & Olson (2013). We need to continue this theory-building process.

Rice, J.B. & Hoppe, R.M. (2001). Supply Chain vs. Supply Chain: The Hype & the Reality. Supply Chain Management Review, 5 (5) http: web.mit.edu/supplychain/repository/scvssc.pdf

Antai, I. & Olson, H. (2013). Interaction: A New Focus for Supply Chain vs Supply Chain Competition. International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, 43 (7), 511-528 DOI: 10.1108/IJPDLM-06-2012-0195

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About Andreas Wieland

Dr. Andreas Wieland is an Associate Professor of Supply Chain Risk Management at the Department of Operations Management, Copenhagen Business School. His current research interests include resilient and socially responsible supply chains.

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