Purpose – There is only limited knowledge about the performance benefits of the alignment of sustainability‐related upstream and downstream collaboration. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the deviation from an optimal profile of supply chain collaboration and its detrimental effect on sustainability performance as well as market performance. Design/methodology/approach – The authors analyze the deviation from an optimal profile of supply chain collaboration and its detrimental effect on sustainability as well as market performance. Using data collected from 259 European manufacturing firms and advanced structural equation modeling approach, the authors empirically test a number of direct, mediation, and moderation effects. Findings – The study shows that an alignment between supply chain initiatives does pay off. Furthermore, the results show that the effects of alignment on performance measures are mediated by the firm's internal sustainable production. Research limitations/implications – The paper provides research limitations and implications as part of the research. Practical implications – The paper also offers important conclusions for practitioners. Particularly the paper shows that sustainable supply chain collaboration needs to be operated at an ideal profile in collaboration with advanced internal practices to generate improved performance. Originality/value – This work is differentiated from earlier work through the joint consideration of alignment of supply chain collaboration for customers and suppliers, providing in combination with mediation analysis new nuances to the field of sustainable supply chain management.
International Journal of Operations & Production Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 28, 2014
Keywords: Sustainability; Supply chain management; Survey; Learning; Buyer‐supplier relationships; Sustainable supply chain management; Supplier collaboration; Customer collaboration; Profile deviation
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