Resilient supply management systems in times of crisis

Diego Vega*, Ala Arvidsson, Félicia Rachel Saïah

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose
This study investigated how organizations can maintain their supply chain (SC) resilience in situations where high-impact shocks cannot be absorbed and what capabilities are needed. The article is an empirical exploration of a socio-ecological view of resilience in the SC context.
Design/methodology/approach
The case under study in this article is that of Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) and MSF's reconfiguration of its supply management processes in response to the supply shocks during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. In total, 503 internal documents and ERP extractions from six databases from late 2019 to September 2020, 43 semi-structured interviews and a 3-round policy Delphi process were used to investigate this phenomenon.
Findings
The authors' results show that throughout the pandemic, MSF adapted its procurement and supply processes to cope with supply shortages at both the international and local levels of the SC. This was possible due to the organization's capacity to use its exploitation and exploration capabilities of the organization at the same time.
Research limitations/implications
This research is based on the single in-depth case study of a medical aid organization. Further research should investigate this phenomenon in commercial companies with similar or different organizational structures.
Originality/value
This study constitutes a first attempt to empirically demonstrate that the four phases of the adaptive cycle put forth in the panarchy theory constitute a suitable representation of the reconfigurations that SCs follow in response to a high-impact shock. The study also adds to the growing body of knowledge on resilience by including ambidexterity as a mechanism to achieve resilience.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalInternational Journal of Operations & Production Management
ISSN0144-3577
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 27.10.2022
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 512 Business and Management
  • resilience
  • ambidexterity
  • interpretive research
  • adaptive cycles
  • COVID-19

Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)

  • AoHP: Humanitarian and societal logistics

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