مسائل اجتماعی در زنجیره های تامین : قابلیت ارتباط مسئولیت، ریسک (فرصت)، و عملکرد
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|847||2012||13 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : International Journal of Production Economics, Volume 140, Issue 1, November 2012, Pages 103–115
Social issues in the supply chain are defined as product- or process-related aspects of operations that affect human safety, welfare and community development. Drawing from related literatures, basic constructs related to capabilities and risk are defined and used to underpin case research in five multinational firms. This data extended our understanding of three key social management capabilities: monitoring, collaboration, and innovation. Moreover, the field research revealed four key linkages that detail how managers actively can work toward mitigating social risks, creating new opportunities, and improving firm performance. Collectively, these capabilities and linkages establish the basis for an integrative framework and five research propositions.
A growing number of customers, investors, regulators, and the public are actively investigating aspects of a firm's supply chain that extend far beyond traditional aspects such as cost, quality and financial performance. Over the last decade, social and environmental issues have attracted increased scrutiny and debate. To their credit, many managers have moved forward in their efforts to develop relatively sophisticated products, processes and systems that respond to and plan for environmental issues. For example, widely accepted international certifications, such as ISO 14001, have helped to standardize management systems linked to operations (González-Benito and González-Benito, 2008), and climate change concerns have fostered initiatives to evaluate and label carbon footprints on products, particularly in the U.K. Moreover, researchers have documented evidence that environmental management is linked to performance for both supplier management (Yang et al., 2010) and the broader supply chain (Seuring and Müller, 2008). In parallel, governments also are increasingly implementing regulations that require standardized reporting by firms of pollutants (e.g., Toxic Release Inventory in the U.S.). Unfortunately, management of social issues in the supply chain lags far behind. Many innovative and sophisticated firms located throughout the world continue to struggle with how to define, understand and plan for social issues, not to mention realize competitive benefits. For example, inadequate testing of materials or components by a supplier may flow downstream to customers in the form of dangerous or harmful products, resulting in product recalls, a tarnished reputation, and ultimately, significantly higher costs and lower revenue (Roth et al., 2008). Multi-national firms such as Apple, Nike, and The Gap are beginning to actively monitor their suppliers' labor practices, Wal-Mart is seeking to improve product safety, and Home Depot is working to develop stronger ties to local communities attempting to reduce negative social impacts related to lumber sourcing (Grow, 2005, Hesseldahl, 2006 and Zimmerman and Fong, 2008). Other aspects, such as workforce practices used by suppliers in distant countries, do not escape the attention of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and are now relevant to many firms or their customers (Leipziger, 2009). Recently, new regulations for the Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) in the European Union are another indicator of a strong trend toward simultaneously attempting to protect human health and the environment (European Commission, 2007). First coined by Elkington (1997), the combination of economic, social, and environmental performance can be thought of as a ‘triple bottom line’. These concerns and challenges are not unique to one region, one industry, or one type of firm. Instead, these issues cut across the entire supply chain, which must be viewed broadly to encompass internal operations, multiple tiers of suppliers, and both direct customers and final consumers. In short, for operations and supply chain management, social issues can be narrowed to product or process aspects that affect human safety and welfare, community development, and protection from harm. Within this domain, this paper explores the relationships between the supply chain context and actions that tie different management practices to social issues and outcomes. Because firm boundaries tend to be somewhat fluid over time as outsourcing, increased vertical integration or off-shoring occurs, it is important to recognize that social issues in the supply chain must encompass suppliers, downstream distributors, customers, end-users, and in-house operations. And the scope of social responsibility evolves over time based on society norms and expectations. Thus, as observed by a senior manager in one of our cases, it is difficult to hold suppliers accountable for social issues if your firm is unwilling to lead by example. This research seeks to understand which social management capabilities contribute to competitiveness, and more specifically, how they might be linked to social responsibility, risk, opportunity, and performance in the supply chain. Thus, this paper makes three contributions. First, drawing on prior literature, three constructs related to the management of social issues in operations are identified, defined, and delineated: capabilities, responsibility, and risk. Second, field-based case research was employed to develop a more detailed understanding of how firms have translated capabilities into specific social management practices that can be adopted within other firms. As such, this paper takes a step toward addressing the demand for more research addressing social issues within sustainable supply chains (Seuring and Müller, 2008). Our case data then is combined with earlier literature to construct an integrative framework that depicts how these constructs collectively form management's approach to social issues in the supply chain. Four critical linkages are proposed that connect multiple capabilities for managing social issues to both inputs, such as responsibility, and outputs, such as risk, opportunity and performance. Finally, a set of research propositions derived from the case data is presented to guide future research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Overall, senior managers agreed that dealing with social issues has proven difficult. Public expectations evolve, relationships between practices, costs and innovation are difficult to define and disentangle, and pathways to competitive benefits remain fuzzy. And management was able to control only a few of the many factors that linked social management capabilities, risk and performance. In some cases, higher costs resulted in the short term. However, over the longer term, case data pointed to several significant competitive advantages that were starting to emerge, albeit in a tentative fashion. For research and practice, five critical aspects were identified. First, social management capabilities can be explicitly modeled and assessed along three dimensions: monitoring; collaboration; and innovation. Moreover, four linkages explain the relationship between responsibility, social management capabilities, risk and performance in the supply chain: exposure; auditing; mitigation; and development. Managers need to improve their awareness and execution of each, and further research is needed to identify clear metrics and assess the strength of relationships between the constructs. Finally, research is needed to understand whether improvement in social and environmental performance occurred simultaneously or alternatively, in sequential waves. Moreover, exploring the five propositions that were derived from our case research should provide fruitful new directions for understanding how managers can better manage social issues in their supply chains.