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|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|4480||2012||9 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||6890 کلمه|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Production Economics, Volume 140, Issue 1, November 2012, Pages 407–415
This paper investigates the importance of quality management practices for the success of environmental management initiatives. It has been recently established that sustainability initiatives whether in terms of social or environmental investments can improve organizational performance. Additionally, some authors have suggested striking similarities between environmental and quality practices and argued that a well functioning quality management system is a prerequisite for a successful environmental management system. However, it may be the case that having a well functioning quality management system enables a company to reap higher returns from its environmental management practices. The aim of this paper is to explore the role of quality management in the environmental management—performance relationship. Specifically, we assess whether or not quality management practices interact with environmental practices to drive operational performance. This question was tested with survey data collected from 1142 plants. The study makes significant contributions to the quality and sustainability literature and implications are drawn to practice.
Environmental management practices as part of the sustainability management movement have become an integral part of the practices and mindsets of operations managers and researchers (Kleindorfer et al., 2005). Recently, Lubin and Esty (2010) concluded that the sustainability ‘hype’ is here to stay and will profoundly change the way companies run their businesses. Lubin and Esty (2010) reviewed managerial megatrends such as quality management and concluded that sustainability is developing along a similar trajectory to quality management, which became a megatrend in the 1980s and 1990s and remains so today. In addition to following similar trajectories, some authors have identified similarities between sustainability and quality programs in terms of their philosophies and applied practices (Klassen and McLaughlin, 1996, Curkovic et al., 2000 and Narasimhan and Schoenherr, 2012). Philosophically, both sustainability and quality take a proactive managerial stance that focuses on long-term goals and maintaining performance achievements. At a practice level there are numerous resemblances such as zero defects, waste reduction, life-cycle assessment and employee involvement and training (Hunt and Auster, 1990 and Curkovic et al., 2008). According to Curkovic et al. (2000) many conceptual and case studies have suggested that significant benefits could arise when applying quality practices within the new paradigm of sustainability practices. In fact a few studies have suggested that a well functioning quality management system could be a pre-requisite for the successful implementation of environmental management practices (Rusinko, 2005 and Curkovic et al., 2008). Whilst focusing on the driving role of quality management the literature has largely overlooked the possibility that environmental and quality practices might interact in a positively reinforcing fashion to improve operational performance. This paper focuses on the environmental management pillar of sustainability and its relationship with quality management practices and performance. Specifically, this research explores the interaction of quality management and environmental management practices as they relate to operational performance. We propose that quality management practices such as ISO 9001, supplier certification, statistical process control and total quality management (TQM) might enhance the success of environmental management practices such as ISO 14001, pollution prevention, recycling of materials and waste reduction. This research analyzes the following research question: To what extent do quality management practices interact with environmental management practices to improve a plant's operational performance? The research question will be assessed through regression analysis using a large-scale dataset compiled in a cross-country study. In answering this question significant contributions will be made to theory and practice. Critically, the anecdotal evidence of the importance of quality practices for the success of environmental initiatives will be empirically tested. In the process of addressing the interaction between quality and environmental practices this research will also provide additional evidence on whether or not investments in environmental practice have operational performance benefits. The findings will provide essential information for practice as critical insights about the interplay between quality and environmental practices are explored. The end result will be a better understanding of when and why organizations should invest in environmental management practices. This paper is organized as follows. In the next section the sustainability literature regarding performance and quality aspects is reviewed, synthesized and analyzed. Based on this review hypotheses are developed. The subsequent sections highlight the research methods and the analyses. Afterwards, the results of the regression analyses are presented followed by the discussion. Finally, the paper concludes with suggestions for future research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This research adds to the ongoing discussion on the performance impact of sustainable operations management in general and environmental investment in particular. We have explored the pivotal role of manufacturing practices in the form quality management for the success of environmental management practices. Nevertheless, as with any research effort this study suffers from some limitations. First, the GMRG data is unlikely to be a random sample of the population of manufacturing plants in the selected countries. Second, since the data is of cross-sectional nature it is relatively difficult to assess causality, even though some of the items asked respondents to look backwards for two years. Third, this study solely focuses on the environmental pillar of sustainability. However, social aspects such as health and safety are also likely to be affected by various quality management practices. In order to provide a more complete and holistic view future research should assess sustainability from an economic, environmental and social standpoint. Fourth, we only focused on quality management practices when other practices such as lean manufacturing are also likely to affect the efficacy of sustainable practices. Finally, we have solely focused on the manufacturing sector. However, the interaction may be of different nature in the service sector where research of this nature is still very limited. Despite these limitations, this paper makes important contributions to research and practice. From an academic perspective our main contribution lays in identifying the interactive relationship between environmental practices and quality practices. Previous research has highlighted that a well functioning quality management program acts as an enabler for environmental practices (Curkovic et al., 2000, 2008). In addition, it has been suggested that companies that have invested in quality management practices may reap greater benefits from their environmental practices (Rusinko, 2005). However, this is one of the first studies that empirically identified that companies gain higher performance benefits in terms of cost, flexibility and delivery performance when environmental management practices are in the presence of high levels of investments in quality management practices. These theoretical contributions are equally or even more important from a practitioners point of view. It is certainly important to confirm that investments in environmental practices improve operational performance. However, it is also important to note that in this current and ever increasing competitive business environment it is of pivotal importance that companies can gain higher benefits through combining environmental with quality investments. This is especially critical in the light of the ever-increasing pressure on companies to become green. Through exploring this synergetic and reinforcing interaction effect between quality and environmental management practices we provide an additional argument as to why companies should invest in environmental practices.