Purpose – Twenty-five years ago IJPDLM published “Integrating the Supply Chain” (Stevens, 1989). The purpose of that original work was to examine the state-of-the-art in supply chain management (SCM). There have been substantial changes to the landscape within which supply chains function and changes to supply chains themselves. Given these changes it is appropriate to re-visit what is the new state-of-the art and determine whether the 1989 conceptualization requires extending. The authors also attempt to assess whether the evolution of SCM is associated with improved financial performance. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – The authors take a conceptual approach to suggest that SCM is undergoing a transition to devolved, collaborative supply chain clusters. In addition, the authors consider imperatives and models for supply chain change and development. In line with the 1989 work, many of the observations in this invited paper are based on the primary author’s experience. The authors use a selection of financial data from leading firms to assess whether benefits attributed to SCM and changes in supply chain operating models have affected financial performance. Findings – The authors formalize a model for the dynamics of SCM change. The authors also synthesize a number of models of SCM that extend the original, highly cited work. These include goal-oriented networks and devolved, collaborative supply chain clusters. The authors also find the associations between the evolution of SCM and measures of firm financial performance over time to be equivocal. Practical implications – This work proposes two additional operating models that firms can implement in order to improve the efficacy of their supply chains. Originality/value – The authors extend Stevens (1989) original work by synthesizing a number of additional models for SCI.
International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Feb 8, 2016
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