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Horses for courses: explaining the gap between the theory and practice of green supply

Horses for courses: explaining the gap between the theory and practice of green supply
Horses for courses: explaining the gap between the theory and practice of green supply
Researchers and policy-makers have become increasingly enthusiastic about greening purchasing and supply management activities. In theory, greening supply should both limit environmental damage from industrial activities and deliver bottom-line benefits to implementing firms. However, compared with other environmental initiatives, few firms have implemented extensive green supply programmes.
This paper seeks to resolve the apparent paradox between the desirability of green supply in theory and the slow implementation of green supply in practice. Using data from a recent series of interviews and a questionnaire in the UK, we examine the green supply practices adopted by particular types of firm and their performance implications. We cluster the operating units in our sample into four archetypal groups of green supply adopters and examine the characteristics of each group. We conclude that explaining the gap between the theory and practice of green supply requires looking beyond the aggregate pattern across firms. Firms are not ignoring the potential private benefits from green supply. On the contrary, they are rational actors playing to their own strengths and designing appropriate packages of green supply activities within their own corporate environmental, procurement and performance contexts.
41-60
Bowen, Frances E.
5e46cd5e-0582-4626-a76f-0d16c869d4cf
Cousins, Paul D.
9198177a-860a-4056-bc29-e2fbce3ad934
Lamming, Richard C.
000e9217-49b0-48a3-8f1f-74e0298be998
Faruk, Adam C.
76a3fc9d-b6db-4c3d-a842-af195c2bec55
Bowen, Frances E.
5e46cd5e-0582-4626-a76f-0d16c869d4cf
Cousins, Paul D.
9198177a-860a-4056-bc29-e2fbce3ad934
Lamming, Richard C.
000e9217-49b0-48a3-8f1f-74e0298be998
Faruk, Adam C.
76a3fc9d-b6db-4c3d-a842-af195c2bec55

Bowen, Frances E., Cousins, Paul D., Lamming, Richard C. and Faruk, Adam C. (2002) Horses for courses: explaining the gap between the theory and practice of green supply. Greener Management International, 35, 41-60.

Record type: Article

Abstract

Researchers and policy-makers have become increasingly enthusiastic about greening purchasing and supply management activities. In theory, greening supply should both limit environmental damage from industrial activities and deliver bottom-line benefits to implementing firms. However, compared with other environmental initiatives, few firms have implemented extensive green supply programmes.
This paper seeks to resolve the apparent paradox between the desirability of green supply in theory and the slow implementation of green supply in practice. Using data from a recent series of interviews and a questionnaire in the UK, we examine the green supply practices adopted by particular types of firm and their performance implications. We cluster the operating units in our sample into four archetypal groups of green supply adopters and examine the characteristics of each group. We conclude that explaining the gap between the theory and practice of green supply requires looking beyond the aggregate pattern across firms. Firms are not ignoring the potential private benefits from green supply. On the contrary, they are rational actors playing to their own strengths and designing appropriate packages of green supply activities within their own corporate environmental, procurement and performance contexts.

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Published date: 2002

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 35928
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/35928
PURE UUID: 0045449b-63fd-4b68-8214-05398a23f3f3

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Date deposited: 23 May 2006
Last modified: 23 Jul 2020 16:34

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Contributors

Author: Frances E. Bowen
Author: Paul D. Cousins
Author: Richard C. Lamming
Author: Adam C. Faruk

University divisions

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