A framework for assessing sustainability in multi-tier supply chains using empirical evidence and fuzzy expert system

Shayganmehr, Masoud, Kumar, Anil, Luthra, Sunil and Garza-Reyes, Jose Arturo (2021) A framework for assessing sustainability in multi-tier supply chains using empirical evidence and fuzzy expert system. Journal of Cleaner Production. ISSN 0959-6526 (In Press)

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Abstract / Description

This study investigates various factors for assessing sustainability in Multi-tier Supply Chains (MtSCs) using a hybrid approach consisting of an empirical study and fuzzy expert system. After an extensive literature review, four research questions were formulated and a questionnaire designed. From its distribution, 152 responses were collected from the textile industry. Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) was employed to determine the most effective factors that could contribute to the evaluation of extensive aspects of sustainability in MtSCs as well as recognize the importance of constructs. The categorized constructs based on their importance included “Environmental issues”, “Economic issues”, “Policy and governance”, “Participation”, “Social issues”, “Transparency” and “Leadership and support”. A comprehensive rating for evaluating sustainability by indicating a readiness score and linguistic variables for each construct was developed in the form of a “fuzzy expert system”. The developed fuzzy expert system was applied in an Iranian textile company to assess its readiness status as a case application. The results indicated that the company had the highest and lowest readiness in “Transparency” and “Environmental issues” with total readiness scores of 2.65 and 0.17 respectively. The finding recommends that the company should pay more attention to environmental issues such as making a cutback on utility consumption and increasing recycled materials. The framework’s validity was measured around 90% based on the satisfaction of experts’ judgments, which enables the framework to be applied in different industrial settings. Theoretically, the findings contribute to the Resources-Based View (RBV) theory, with a focus on the sustainability of MtSCs, by unveiling a comprehensive set of factors for assessing sustainability and recognizing external and internal strategic resources that lead firms to sustainable competitive advantages.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: multi-tier suppliers; sustainability; exploratory factor analysis; fuzzy inference engine; resources-based view theory; emerging economy
Subjects: 600 Technology > 650 Management & auxiliary services
Department: Guildhall School of Business and Law
Depositing User: Anil Kumar
Date Deposited: 12 Jul 2021 08:45
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2021 08:45
URI: http://repository.londonmet.ac.uk/id/eprint/6849

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