Many researchers believe the tremendous industrial development over the past two centuries is unsustainable because it has led to unintended ecological deterioration. Despite the ever-growing attention sustainable supply-chain management has received, most SSCM research and models look at the consequences, rather than the antecedents or motives of such responsible practices. The few studies that explore corporate motives have remained largely qualitative, and large-scale empirical analyses are scarce. Drawing on multiple theories and combining supply-chain and business ethics literature, we purport that (...) instrumental, relational, and moral motives are behind a firm’s engagement in SSCM practices. Specifically, we examine the links between corporate motives, SSCM practices, and firm performance. Using a sample of 259 supply-chain firms in Germany, we empirically test five hypothesized relationships. Our results reveal that relational and moral motives are key drivers, and that firms exhibiting high levels of moral obligations tend to outperform those primarily driven by amoral considerations. Findings of this study contribute to multiple literatures espousing sustainability management and can help policy makers, stakeholder groups, and scholars develop more robust strategies for encouraging firms to practice SSCM. (shrink)
As recently stakeholders complain about the use of conflict minerals in consumer products that are often invisible to them in final products, firms across industries implement conflict mineral management practices. Conflict minerals are those, whose systemic exploitation and trade contribute to human right violations in the country of extraction and surrounding areas. Particularly, supply chain managers in the Western world are challenged taking reasonable steps to identify and prevent risks associated with these resources due to the globally dispersed nature of (...) supply chains and the opacity of the origin of commodities. Supply chain due diligence represents a holistic concept to proactively manage supply chains reducing the likelihood of the use of conflict minerals effectively. Based on an exploratory study with 27 semi-structured interviews within five European industries, we provide insights into patterns of implementation, key motivational factors, barriers and enablers, and impacts of SCDD in mineral supply chains. Our results contribute to both theory and practice as we provide first insights to SCDD practices and make recommendations for an industry-wide implementation of SCDD. Altogether, this study provides the basis for future theory testing research in the context of SCDD and conflict mineral management. (shrink)
Media increasingly accuse firms of exploiting suppliers, and these allegations often result in lurid headlines that threaten the reputations and therefore business successes of these firms. Neither has the phenomenon of supplier exploitation been investigated from a rigorous, ethical standpoint, nor have answers been provided regarding why some firms pursue exploitative approaches. By systemically contrasting economic liberalism and just prices as two divergent perspectives on supplier exploitation, we introduce a distinction of common business practice and unethical supplier exploitation. Since supplier (...) exploitation is based on power, we elucidate several levels of power as antecedents and investigate the role of ethical climate as a moderator. This study extends Victor and Cullen’s ethical climate matrix according to a supply chain dimension and is summarized in an integrated, conceptual model of five propositions for future theory testing. Results provide a frame of reference for executives and scholars, who can now delineate unethical exploitation and understand important antecedents of the phenomenon better. (shrink)
Using a sample of multinational firms in Germany, we develop and empirically examine a model to test the effects of ethical climate and its antecedents on purchasing social responsibility (PSR). Our results show different effects of benevolence dimensions of ethical climate on PSR: employee-focused climate has no effect, but community-focused climate is a significant driver of PSR. The results also show that top management ethical norms and code of conduct implementation impact PSR directly as well as indirectly through ethical climate.
It is not easy being green, but it does beg the question: Does being green pay off on the bottom-line? Unfortunately, that question of becoming ISO 14001 to reap financial benefit remains widely unanswered. In particular, corporate practice is interested in how environmental management impacts firms’ finance through top-line impact, bottom-line impact, or both—as this paves the way for an investment of environmental management. As current findings are mixed, our study tracks financial performance of publicly traded US firms between 1996 (...) and 2005 to test whether ISO 14001 leads to improved financial performance. Employing a rigorous event-study approach, we compare certified firms to different control groups based on several matching criteria that include industry, size, and/or ROA. In the short run, ISO 14001 certification makes only a minor impact on the bottom-line, according to our results. However, these same results show a significant financial improvement over the long haul with ISO 14001 certification. Additionally, this long-term improvement also makes a significant improvement in top-line performance. Thus, we conclude that environmental management pays off along both dimensions. (shrink)