Supply chains for societal outcomes

Isabell Storsjö

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisCollection of Articles


The public sector is under pressure to do more and better with less. The government and its agencies cannot solve today’s complex problems and challenges (including climate change, pandemics, disasters) alone but need to collaborate with other actors to achieve desired value outcomes for society.

Supply chains have been argued to exist everywhere, whether they are managed or not. In recent years, mainstream journals in operations management (OM) and supply chain management (SCM) have shown an increased interest in publishing research on supply chains and the public and non-profit sectors and spheres. Such topics include research in which organisations such as government agencies, NGOs, and social enterprises, with main motivations other than profit maximisation, are viewed as managers of their own supply networks. However, relatively little research has addressed the intersection of supply chains and government through policies, regulation and public agencies and SCM strategy, structure and performance.

This thesis explores what a supply chain perspective entails in settings of (more or less) strictly regulated public service settings and processes. The thesis includes publications focusing on legal processes in the justice system and public procurement processes and preparedness in the health care, energy, and water services sectors in Finland. The thesis author applies the pragmatist paradigm and an abductive reasoning process. The empirical studies and the publications were explorative and used qualitative research methods. Data consisted of semi-structured interviews and documents, analysed with qualitative analysis methods such as coding template and general inductive analysis.

This thesis uses the “public value framework” originally popularised by Mark Moore to further the discussion of how to integrate SCM with public value and societal outcomes. The framework is intended to focus managerial attention on the elements (and alignment) of public value, the authorising environment, and operational capabilities. For SCM research that intersects with policy and regulation, the public value framework provides building blocks that are necessary for the consideration of societal outcomes such as justice (for maintaining a social equilibrium in society), civil preparedness (for resilience at a societal level), and innovation (for future growth).
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Hanken School of Economics
  • Grant, David, Degree supervisor
  • Martins, Ana Lúcia, Thesis supervisor, External person
Award date01.11.2021
Place of PublicationHelsinki
Print ISBNs978-952-232-447-4
Electronic ISBNs978-952-232-448-1
Publication statusPublished - 2021
MoE publication typeG5 Doctoral dissertation (article)


  • 512 Business and Management
  • supply chain management
  • public services
  • public value
  • societal outcomes
  • public policy instruments
  • Public Value Framework
  • strategic triangle
  • Lean thinking
  • legal process
  • public procurement
  • cascading crises
  • justice
  • innovation
  • preparedness
  • intersectoral vulnerabilities
  • abductive reasoning
  • pragmatism


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