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IJPDLM
41,3                                  Future sustainable supply chains:
                                        what should companies scan?
                                                                           Nathalie Fabbe-Costes
228                                              Centre de REcherche sur le Transport et la LOGistique,
                                                   ´        ´        ´
                                          Universite de la Mediterranee-Aix-Marseille II, Aix-en-Provence, France
Received October 2009                                                          Christine Roussat
Revised February 2010,
May 2010,
                                                   Centre de REcherche sur le Transport et la LOGistique,
June 2010                                                ´
                                                Universite Clermont-Ferrand II, Aix-en-Provence, France, and
Accepted June 2010
                                                                                   Jacques Colin
                                                 Centre de REcherche sur le Transport et la LOGistique,
                                                   ´        ´        ´
                                          Universite de la Mediterranee-Aix-Marseille II, Aix-en-Provence, France

                                      Abstract
                                      Purpose – Companies that try to build sustainable supply chains or that have to reengineer their supply
                                      chains to face sustainable development issues are confronted with such a complex and uncertain context
                                      that scanning their environment becomes more than ever necessary. This paper makes up the first stage
                                      of a research program. It aims to find an adequate scanning approach for sustainable supply chain design.
                                      Design/methodology/approach – The research follows a two-steps methodology. First, it looks for
                                      appropriate scanning frameworks by reviewing the dedicated literature. Second, it gathers ideas and
                                      knowledge combining an analysis of sustainable supply chain empirical studies with the collection of
                                      experts’ scanning know-how, by means of semi-structured interviews.
                                      Findings – This first stage of the research program suggests use of a multi-and interrelated levels
                                      scope for sustainable scanning with a network perspective. The renewed target approach it promotes
                                      results in modifying scanning priorities. The overall findings shape up the first draft of a sustainable
                                      scanning framework, including a multi-levels scope of analysis, a list of sustainable targets and a first
                                      contribution concerning scanning methods and attitudes.
                                      Research limitations/implications – The relevance of our scanning framework needs further
                                      testing to validate its usefulness and provide recommendations for managers.
                                      Practical implications – The paper proposes a scanning framework and a list of targets that could
                                      be implemented by professionals.
                                      Originality/value – The contribution in this paper is to link environmental scanning and sustainable
                                      development adding a supply chain orientation, and to propose a conceptual “sustainable scanning
                                      framework”. It is hoped that further research will prove that it has interesting managerial implications
                                      for companies challenged by sustainable development issues.
                                      Keywords Supply chain management, Sustainable development
                                      Paper type Research paper


                                      1. Sustainable supply chains: the need for grasping the environment
                                      Originally dubbed “eco development” (at the Stockholm 1972 International Conference),
International Journal of Physical     the concept of “sustainable development” was finally defined in the IUCN,1980 World
Distribution & Logistics Management   Conservation Strategy report (1980) and acknowledged in Rio de Janeiro earth summit or
Vol. 41 No. 3, 2011
pp. 228-252
q Emerald Group Publishing Limited
0960-0035
                                      The authors would like to thank the anonymous reviewers for their significant help and
DOI 10.1108/09600031111123778         guidance with this paper.
“The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development” (UNCED) held in                        Sustainable
Rio de Janeiro from 3 to 14 June 1992 as “a development that meets the needs of the                 supply chains
present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.
While different trends exist, the most widespread one supports the triple bottom line
approach combining environmental friendliness, social responsibility and economic
development. Academic and corporate interest in sustainable development has been
growing and the recent worldwide financial and energy crises are likely to reinforce the                     229
weight of sustainable development within public and corporate strategic objectives.
    The last decades have shown great changes in logistics, operation management and
supply chain management (SCM) in companies, and today’s organizations are still
reorganizing and streamlining their supply chains so as to better face strategic
challenges. Considering the development of complex worldwide production/distribution
networks and of global commodity/value chains (Bairns, 2005), sustainable
development issues involve not only firms but entire supply chains as well. Most
experts are convinced that sustainable development requirements will have a strong
impact on logistics, operations management and SCM, and that “all industries will be
challenged to reorganize their supply chains” (Vachon and Mao, 2008, p. 1552). This
would suggest that the unit that will be dealt with in future strategic re-engineering will
not be the individual firm but the network of collaborating companies, and that great
changes will have to be made regarding supply chain processes and SCM.
    SCM is a pulled-oriented approach in charge of practically linking demand and supply.
SCM has many meanings and has given rise to research at many levels (Mentzer et al.,
2001). In accordance with an extended supply chain approach recently recommended by
Linton et al. (2007), we refer to SCM as an integrative philosophy to manage total flows as
cooperatively as possible, from the earliest raw materials suppliers to the ultimate
customers, and beyond, namely the disposal and recycling processes, too. Thus, like Chen
and Paulraj (2004, p. 121), we consider that “the business world is composed of a network
of interdependent relationships developed and fostered through strategic collaboration
with to the goal of deriving mutual benefits”. In line with the typology of Larson et al.
(2007, p. 4), we adopt the unionist perspective, in which “SCM subsumes many traditional
business functional areas, including purchasing, logistics, operations, and marketing”.
Since this perspective “espouses a multiple function SCM concept” (Larson et al.,
2007, p. 6), we subscribe to a broad and deep SCM perspective. In line with these
conceptual bases, we view supply chains in their highest degree of complexity as defined
by Mentzer et al. (2001, p. 4): the “ultimate supply chain” that “includes all the
organizations involved in all the upstream and downstream flows of products, services,
finances, and information from the initial supplier to the ultimate customer”.
    The growing concern about sustainable development has an increasingly greater
impact upon supply chains and SCM. As stated by Linton et al. (2007, p. 1078):
   [. . .] sustainability also must integrate issues and flows that extend beyond the core of SCM:
   product design, manufacturing by-products, by-products produced during product use,
   product life extension, product end-of-life, and recovery processes at end-of-life.
Beyond these requirements, sustainable supply chains are considered to be a strategic
lever for firms. Researchers in SCM explore the links between sustainability-related
competencies and competitive positions in highly competitive industries
(Flint and Golicic, 2009). They urge firms to strategically undertake sustainable SCM
IJPDLM   in order to achieve higher economic performance (Carter and Rogers, 2008), or to find
41,3     new areas of competitive advantage (Markley and Davis, 2007). Consequently, in their
                                                                                 ¨
         recent literature review dedicated to sustainable SCM, Seuring and Muller (2008, p. 1699)
         point out that “operations, purchasing and supply chain managers have seen the
         integration of environmental and social issues [. . .] into their daily tasks”. They also
         conclude that, “the focal company quite often has to take a longer part of the supply chain
230      into account”, and must have “information on the environmental and social performance
         at the single productions stages” of its suppliers (Seuring and Mu    ¨ller, 2008, p. 1703).
         Focal firms are thus expected to take a wider environmental perspective, particularly
         those wanting “to prepare for the uncharted road, especially if they want to be pioneers or
         early adopters” of sustainable operations and SCM (Kleindorfer et al., 2005, p. 490).
             Sustainable development issues exert pressures upon companies, encouraging them
         to redesign their supply chains. These issues are complex (many intertwined factors are
         to be considered), hence modern organizations will have to get to grips with their
         environments, especially when they are both involved in embedded supply chains and
         intent upon tackling sustainable development issues. Therefore, companies need to scan
         their environment, but what should they scan? As is the case with SCM, we take a broad
         and deep approach of the environment: in this paper, the word stands for the whole
         surrounding context of the firm and of its supply chains, hence not limited to its
         ecological dimension. In line with Frishammar (2002, p. 145-6), environment refers to “all
         of the relevant factors outside an organization’s boundary that are incorporated into its
         decision making”. Since “most managers identified the need for forecasting as one of the
         most important managerial roles” (Raspin and Terjesen, 2007, p. 4), we suggest that
         organizations will potentially have to renew the way they delineate their supply chains
         and scan their environments to provide relevant information for proper forecasting. Our
         research program aims to provide an adequate scanning framework that could structure
         the way companies look for information they can put to use for future sustainable supply
         chain design. Our research questions are as follows:
            RQ1. In order to face new sustainable development issues, what should companies
                 scan in their supply chains’ environment?
            RQ2. Do traditional scanning approaches and targets fit these new requirements?
            RQ3. Should new frameworks be developed?
         Our article is organized as follows. First, since environmental scanning is an important
         topic in strategy, we analyze the dedicated literature to check whether scanning
         approaches fit sustainable supply chain’s imperatives or not. Second, concluding that
         available scanning approaches do not explicitly address sustainable supply chain
         issues, our research design and methodology have been devised to question their
         relevance to sustainable supply chain scanning. Our results will then be presented and
         discussed, encapsulated in the concept of “sustainable scanning framework”. We shall
         conclude by summing up our research contributions, while discussing its limits and
         highlighting future research needs.

         2. Findings from literature review
         The first step of our research was to explore the scanning literature. We first referred
         to academic papers, identified through a broad literature analysis of a doctoral
dissertation (Roussat, 1996). Second, we updated these early readings, thanks to a free                    Sustainable
literature research and a mechanical one bearing on all the journals found in Emerald                    supply chains
and Science Direct databases, where we focused on articles published since 2000.
“environmental scanning” was sought as an exact match in all fields (Emerald) or in
abstract/title/keywords (Science Direct), and then completed with “competitive
intelligence” and/or “corporate intelligence” searches. We also sought for associations
between environmental scanning and “sustainable supply chain”, “sustainable                                      231
development” and “sustainability”. The whole literature analysis, whose details can
be provided on request, has been conducted in several steps since 2007.

2.1 Environmental scanning to face strategic challenges
Over the years, firms’ environment has gradually been considered as increasingly
changing, uncertain and complex. Consequently, authors have emphasized the need to
understand and analyze organizations’ environments and to factor external variables
into strategic decision making. The normative strategic planning models (Gilmore and
Brandenburg, 1962; Learned et al., 1965) explicitly include the need for the firm to collect
information about its environment. Exploring threats and opportunities detected by
environmental scanning remains critical for Ansoff (1975), who calls for the identification
of “weak signals”, or for Porter (1980), who links strategy formulation with the analysis
of the industry. Hamel and Prahalad (1989) recommend developing an environmental
focus at every level “through widespread use of competitive intelligence” to support the
strategic intent of the firm. If environmental scanning was first explored as part of “the
art of planning” (Preble et al., 1988), it spread over strategic management approaches.
    The acknowledged necessity to provide managers with relevant information through
environmental analysis has rapidly led to a dedicated research trend, thus bearing out its
academic and managerial importance. First identified as environmental scanning, it
thus evolved into business or competitive intelligence, sometimes focusing on “weak
                   ¸
signals” (Mendonca et al., 2004; Day and Shoemaker, 2006). Ground-breaking authors
commonly defined environmental scanning as:
   [. . .] the activity of acquiring information [. . .] about events and relationships in a company’s
   outside environment, the knowledge of which would assist top management in its task of
   charting the company’s future course of action (Aguilar, 1967, p. 1).
Scanning literature first focused on managers’ individual scanning activities (Keegan,
1974). Though the subject is still being studied, perspectives on corporate scanning (Fahey
and King, 1977; Stubbart, 1982; Lenz and Engledow, 1986) defined typologies identifying
an ideal scanning process (that collects large and multi-dimensional information, analyzes
data with sophisticated methods and relies on a specific business unit) and sought for
explanations for the different levels and patterns of scanning observed in practice (like in
Choo, 2001). Empirical studies showed that environmental scanning is more frequent in
high-performing firms (Daft et al., 1988), that enterprises with highly sophisticated
scanning systems boast higher profitability than the others (Subramanian et al., 1993),
that perceived environment instability (Klein and Linneman, 1984) is positively correlated
with higher scanning efforts in the firm, and that there is a positive relationship between
scanning frequency and the likelihood of change in strategic content (Muralidharan, 2003).
Even if some studies do not clearly conclude on the direction of causal relationships, the
fact that “successful companies are actively involved in environmental scanning suggests
IJPDLM   it is considered a ‘valuable activity’” (Camponovo and Pigneur, 2004, p. 4), the most
41,3     important method among prospective ones (Schwarz, 2008).

         2.2 Environmental scanning: which targeting approaches?
         In former research papers, most authors stood up for targeting the whole environment
         and advised firms against reducing their analysis to economic considerations (Fahey et al.,
232      1981). They advocated the development of a scanning scope (the environmental zones to
         scan) that was to be as wide as possible, while suggesting that scanning operations be
         focused in order to ease the scanning process.
             Researchers thus designed various segmentations identifying different
         environmental components. Most approaches are in line with the Bourgeois’ (1980)
         work, dividing up the environment into “general” and “task” sub categories. General
         environmental frameworks have evolved from a mere list of macro-environmental
         components (political, economic, social and technological design) for Ahituv et al. (1998),
         similar to Aaker’s (1983) and Jain’s (1984); 15 environmental zones for Prescott and
         Smith (1989) to take on a deeper standpoint, including individual and collective cognitive
         perspectives for Brockhoff (1991), Slaughter (1999) and Voros (2001, 2003). Some
         wide-ranging designs include demography and natural resources (Kourteli’s, 2005).
         Task environment is mainly identified as consumers, competitors, government and
         more recently suppliers, in line with Porter’s five force model (1980). Brockhoff (1991)
         combines both approaches, dealing with “interest zones” (technological, political [etc.])
         and “interest groups” (suppliers, clients [etc.]).
                                                                                            ¸
             It is often suggested to operationalize such frameworks: via checklists (Mendonca et al.,
         2004; Oreja-Rodriguez and Yanes-Estevez, 2007); through the use of causal diagrams close
         to information system design (Narchal et al., 1987) or road-mapping technology processes
         (Phaal et al., 2004; Camponovo and Pigneur, 2004). Moreover, in order to guide scanning,
         some researchers recommend completing environmental segmentation by prioritizations,
         based upon interviews of experts (Calori, 1989), according to “strategic importance for
         firms” (Stoffels, 1982), “event impact probability” (Aaker, 1983), or “critical and
         non-critical importance” (Bates, 1985). Finally, surveys conducted to determine the
         environmental zones that firms accurately monitor reveal a clear focalization on the
         economic and technological zones (Jain, 1984; Subramanian et al., 1993), but a slight
         enlargement of the scanning scope over time, as well. Empirical data also demonstrate that
         “executives in high-performing companies tend to scan environmental information more
         broadly than their counterparts in low performing companies” (Xu et al., 2003, p. 382).

         2.3 Scanning scope: does it refer to sustainable supply chain issues?
         From the literature analysis, two important points can be outlined. First, we can note
         that most scanning papers retain a rather isolated vision of the firm (as an island,
           ˚
         Hakansson and Snehota, 1989), and a fragmented approach of its environment, without
         emphasizing links and interactions through environmental components (except for the
         causal approaches previously pointed, and Fabbe-Costes and Roussat, 2007). Most
         scanning models are based on a priori variables to be taken into consideration, and these
         still focus on pioneer segmentations of the environment thus “remaining at the level of
         classifying it into sectors” (Xu et al., 2003, p. 382). As Tonn (2008, p. 596) notes, a review
         of the “state-of-the-art in environmental scanning does not reveal any major changes
         in its basic methods since the 1970s’”, confirming the lack of conceptions of
environments sufficient for guiding scanning (Lenz and Engledow, 1986). Meanwhile,               Sustainable
the few empirical studies available (Benczur, 2005) do not offer much empirical data in       supply chains
order to examine the current scanning priorities in organizations. However, numerous
authors call for environmental scanning to “more adequately comprehend a richer and
more complex reality” (Slaughter, 1999, p. 441), advise firms to emphasize “the
peripheral environment, new markets and services” (Veflen Olsen and Sallis, 2006, p. 51)
and “to seek out a framework of multiple perspectives” (Neugarten, 2006, p. 903).                     233
    The second point raised is that very few papers in the literature address the matter of
scanning as related to sustainable development. This is understandable considering the
recent awareness of companies, but can also be challenged in so far as sustainable
development is a recurring topic in the field of management science. None of the papers
we analyzed for this research explicitly refer to an environmental scanning process
connected to sustainable development. We can just point out scanning business cases
leading to the identification of environmental trends (Adema and Roehl, 2010) or the
inclusion in some frameworks of the “green” issue as an environmental component
(for example in Voros’s spiral dynamics structure, in 2001). This surprising result
appears to be confirmed by the Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals
2003-2006 bibliographic opus (Fleisher et al., 2007), within which no paper seems to refer
to sustainable development. The association between environmental scanning and
sustainable development remains relevant as foresighting “presents a forward view,
which is consistent with sustainability” (Tilley and Fuller, 2000, p. 158) while remaining
implicit, since “the paradigm of sustainable development inherently, but not explicitly,
embraces future thinking” (Kelly et al., 2004, p. 88).
    Environmental scanning is thus considered as a key to provide useful information to
face strategic challenges but scanning frameworks do not embrace firms’ extended supply
chain and do not refer explicitly to sustainable development. Links between the two
concepts are obvious, insofar as incontrovertible definitions for sustainable development
refer to future concerns, but have not been explored yet, at least by academics. Therefore,
we may wonder whether scanning frameworks could still be called upon to provide useful
information for sustainable supply chain design. That issue requires confronting
scanning frameworks to sustainable supply chain design practices, in order to check
scanning frameworks suitability and to identify relevant scanning targets. As a synthesis
of the scanning literature review, three points need to be challenged:
    (1) The scope of the search for external information: should it be restricted to one
        environmental component or should it be given a broad scope, including
        various ones and/or a deep scope, mobilizing different levels of analysis?
    (2) The relevant targets shaping the scope of scanning: which environmental
        domains? Which panel of actors? Which other external data?
    (3) The targeting scanning methods or key attitudes: if a wide scope is necessary
        what type of prioritization should be opted for? If multiple targets are relevant
        how can they be combined?

3. Research design and methodology
In order to question the relevance of scanning frameworks and targets for sustainable
supply chains design, we explored data sources in various fields. We analyzed
sustainable supply chains and SCM empirical studies to find out which salient points or
IJPDLM              relevant targets were to be considered, and we sought knowledge and know-how from
41,3                sustainable supply chain “experts”. The choice of such data is justified by state-of-the-art
                    scanning literature (Section 2) and the need to capture detailed and practice-related data
                    to challenge existing scanning frameworks and targets.

                    3.1 Collecting secondary data through sustainable supply chain case studies
234                 Case studies provide holistic and in-depth investigations of contemporary phenomena
                    (Yin, 2003) and “because of their observational richness, they also provide a means of
                    refutation of, or extensions to, existing concepts” Stuart et al. (2002, p. 422). In addition,
                    case study is a research strategy that is developing in logistics (Frankel et al., 2005). We
                    thus searched various sources for literature providing sustainable supply chain case
                    studies used as second-hand data: PhD dissertations, published academic or lecture
                    papers and consulting reports.
                        First, we focused on the six PhD dissertations dedicated to sustainable supply chains
                    supported by our research centre, a national pioneer in this area. Each dissertation
                    provides an in-depth analysis of a specific sustainable supply chain (Table I) and has
                    been considered as a second-hand case study.
                        Second, in order to avoid cultural or “special school” bias, we complemented the
                    approach with peer-reviewed papers dealing with sustainable supply chain issues
                    through case studies published in academic journals and conferences. The identification
                    of the papers published since 2000 was conducted through Emerald and Science Direct
                    databases seeking for “sustainable (supply) chain(s)”, “environmentally responsible
                    supply chain”, “green logistics” and “reverse logistics” combined with “case study(ies)”
                    exact match in abstract/title/keywords. This systematic research (details can be
                    provided on request) was completed via free investigations, notably in the proceedings
                    of recent international conferences such as Euroma and Nofoma 2009.
                        Finally, we perused consulting documents (see the Appendix 1), translating firms’
                    experiences or proposing guidelines for sustainable supply chains. Considering the
                    number of consultancies, we focused on widely recognized firms (ranking among
                    top consultancy firms – http://careers-in-business.com/consulting/consrank09.htm)


                    PhD No.    Authors           Topic – products – geographic area – supply chains

                    PhD1       Ummenhofer      How to prevent waste development in the European truck industry.
                               (1998)          Role of integrated-eco-logistics
                    PhD2       Philipp (2005)  Reverse distribution channel of computing appliances in Switzerland –
                                               manufacturers’ logistics strategies
                    PhD3       Noireaux (2006) Reverse logistics of industrial waste produced in French industrial
                                               areas. How to structure the reverse channel?
                    PhD4       Monnet (2007) Reverse logistics to process waste from electrical and electronic
                                               equipment – the role of logistics service providers in structuring the
                                               reverse supply chains (in Norway and France)
                    PhD5       Diniz (2008)    New supply chains to give value to Brazil nuts and help the
                                               development of sustainable development projects in Amazonia
                    PhD6       Bardin (2008)   The development of collective strategies in the retailing sector in France
Table I.                                       to face sustainable development requirements
Case studies from
PhD dissertations   Source: Aix-Marseille University – references available at: www.cret-log.org
or firms with an SCM specialization, and examined the documents published on their                    Sustainable
web sites in 2008 and 2009.
   Case studies presented in these doctoral dissertations, lecture papers and consulting
                                                                                                   supply chains
reports were confronted with scanning frameworks in the same way. They were re-read
with “scanning lenses”, i.e. seeking every external data (fact, figure, event, trend, actor,
and actors’ strategy) deemed useful in the sustainable supply chain design process. In line
with the results of our scanning literature (Section 2), we undertook a thematic content                       235
analysis coding explicit or implicit scanning scope, targets and methods (if relevant), and
coding any other interesting idea or element suggested by the case studies. Through
these analyses, we were able to check “classic” frameworks (mentioned in the literature)
and to point out other scanning perspectives (Section 4 – results).

3.2 Generating primary data via interviewing experts
In order to collect first-hand information and to benefit from the knowledge and
know-how of experts in sustainable SCM, we used semi-structured interviews. Our goal
was to collect insightful qualitative data to define environmental scanning for
sustainable supply chain design as well as data related to uncovering underlying
motivations, beliefs, attitudes, and feelings of 13 experts (Table II). Four experts are
academics (A) working on strategic issues related to SCM and sustainable development.
The other nine work within the sphere of sustainable supply chains as professionals (P),
or experts (E) for different organizations. They have been selected on the basis of the
“relevance of their points of view” on future sustainable supply chains (as articulated
during meetings the authors attended).
   Interviews lasted from March 2009 to October 2009 until we reached a “saturation
point”. They were conducted over the phone or face-to-face, based upon a formal
interview guide structured around four complementary themes to facilitate analysis
(Miles and Huberman, 1994):
   (1) Expert’s field of interest and action: type of product, type of focal company
       studied; country; logistics and supply chain issues.

Firm or organization                         Function or responsibility                     Code

International furniture distribution group   Transport CEO                                  P1
Leading company in environment services      Key account manager waste electrical and       P2
                                             electronic equipment Europe
Leading stationery products group            Security, environment and quality manager      P3
National leading logistics service provider  Organization and methods project manager       P4
World-leading freight forwarder              Information systems implementation project     P5
                                             leader
World-leading freight forwarder              Quality manager                                P6
Consultancy company                          Sustainable development and logistics expert   E1
French environment and energy management Transport and mobility expert                      E2
agency
Regional logistics cluster                   General manager                                E3
Centre for Sustainable Development, Brazilia Agribusiness expert                            A1
University
Business school                              Supply chain teacher and researcher            A2
French universities                          Two university assistant teachers              A3               Table II.
                                                                                            A4     Experts interviewed
IJPDLM      (2) Key points the expert would specially recommend to scan the environment of
41,3            the supply(s) chain(s) he/she is involved in, including past strategic surprises
                and perceived uncertain issues.
            (3) Main issues actually scanned by the expert to support the sustainable supply
                chain design process he/she participates to, including the identification of
                important targets, interactions – if mentioned – between targets and main
236             problems faced.
            (4) Advice the expert could give to managers intending to feed their sustainable
                supply chain design process with environmental scanning information (what to
                scan, how to scan), insisting upon which type(s) of scoping approach(es) to choose.

         The different themes were completed with more precise questions or proposals in order
         to support the debate if necessary. Interviews were recorded and they lasted for at least
         one hour. We analyzed the collected qualitative data by carrying out a content thematic
         analysis.
             The field materials, we collected (from empirical studies found in doctoral
         dissertations, research papers, consulting reports – see Section 3.1. – and experts’
         interviews) were then reorganized in a structured way, in line with the questions raised
         by the literature review (Sections 1 and 2), such as: can we identify relevant key points to
         grasp the environment of a sustainable supply chain? What should be the scope of
         scanning? Which targets should be included in the scanning process? How should the
         process be conducted? Do we find differences with theoretical scanning processes found
         in the literature? Is it relevant to draw up a renewed scanning framework?

         4. Towards a scanning framework for sustainable supply chains
         4.1 Generating the scanning framework
         The research questions the relevance of scanning frameworks and targets to provide
         useful information for sustainable supply chain design. The key literature points to be
         challenged (see conclusions of Section 2) were thus used as “lenses” to structure insights
         from the sustainable supply chain case studies (Section 3.1) and the interviews of experts
         (Section 3.2) as synthesized in Table III. The first data processing was thus analytical,
         looking for every single element mentioned in or by the source.
             Elements from the first data processing were analyzed and compared. This
         triangulation of the data from primary and secondary information sources led to identify
         several signifier targets groups drawing different levels for the scanning framework
         (Sections 4.2 and 4.3). These levels were compared to existing scanning frameworks that
         are focalized on a corporate and sector approach, to conclude that sustainable scanning
         calls for a more sophisticated scope. Then, the analysis of the exhaustive list of targets for
         each level of scanning revealed the need for a new target approach and new scanning
         priorities (Sections 4.4 and 4.5) compared to existing ones. The analysis also permitted to
         point out the existing interactions between and within the framework levels. We thus
         complemented the analytic approach with a systemic one ending with a complex
         representation of the sustainable scanning scope and targets (Section 4.6). A final analysis
         loop considering the overall results permitted to point out some outputs and led us to
         suggest some precautions for further use of the framework (detailed in the end of
         Section 4.6). These different results have been formulated below as suggestions to structure
         a scanning approach addressing sustainable supply chain issues. These suggestions make
Scanning “lenses                            Scope of scanning                                     Targeting approaches in the scanning process
                                                                                       Prioritization among scanning Advice regarding the scanning
Information sources       Environmental domains     Actors                             targets                           process

Secondary sources
Doctoral dissertations    Environmental             Customers, distributors,           Legislation is the focus point     Various geographic scopes are
and academic articles     legislation and taxes     producers, recyclers, suppliers,   Consumers are also key actors      to be taken into consideration:
or lecture papers         Environmental             competitors, innovators,           to scan: academic sources point    from local initiatives and
                          guidelines                investors, external consultants,   out the important role played by   specificities to national level, EU
                          Professional best         banks, public opinion              downstream actors                  and international governments
                          practices or guidelines   All modes of government            Authors insist on the              Necessity to start from the
                          Recycling technologies    controls, policy makers and        importance of local level          concrete chains, the
                          Cultural and political    regulators                         decision-making and action         configuration of actors
                          dimensions                Non-business partners:                                                As far as legislation and rules
                          Economic, environmental   environmental agencies, NGOs,                                         are concerned, both public and
                          and social parameters     social advocates, community                                           private environmental domains
                          Rising transparency       representatives, safety                                               are to be considered:, e.g. private
                          Social awareness          advocates, activists groups,                                          initiatives for self-regulation,
                          Demography                associations                                                          voluntary agreements; from
                          State (and prices) of     Actors from outside the                                               published laws to good
                          natural resources         industry                                                              practices, labels and brands
                          Research and                                                                                    Need to examine actors, their
                          development                                                                                     inputs, throughputs, outputs,
                                                                                                                          their strategies (new entrants,
                                                                                                                          role of TPL, contracts relations,
                                                                                                                          alliances)
                                                                                                                          Awareness of relations between
                                                                                                                          actors and the dynamics of their
                                                                                                                          evolution
                                                                                                                          Necessary awareness of
                                                                                                                          temporal effects
                                                                                                                                                  (continued)
                                                                                                                                                       Sustainable
                                                                                                                                                     supply chains




             meta-table
   field data – a recap
  Main results from the
            Table III.
                                                                                                                                    237
                                                                                                                                                41,3


                                                                                                                               238




  Table III.
                                                                                                                                                IJPDLM




Scanning “lenses                          Scope of scanning                                   Targeting approaches in the scanning process
                                                                                   Prioritization among scanning Advice regarding the scanning
Information sources   Environmental domains       Actors                           targets                           process

Consulting reports    Economic: new markets       Customers, consumers             Legislation and consumer          Governments or regulatory
                      and new economic            Competitors: emphasis on other   requirements                      bodies must be scanned at
                      balance                     experiences and experiments,     Importance of consumer            different levels: local, national
                      Resources: sustainability   green strategies others have     behavior: more demanding,         and international.
                      and scarcity                implemented                      more empowered. Increasingly      Flows of products, waste
                      Changing demographics       Watchdog organizations: NGOs     interacting, calling for          Companies should collaborate to
                      Legislation and changing    and activists Investors          alternative distribution modes    encourage governments to enact
                      regulatory forces           Governments                      One problem has been noticed:     appropriate regulations
                      Techniques: tools and       Associations                     the difficulty to choose “how to   Individual manager level: new
                      metrics                                                      broaden” the scope of scanning    capabilities (for addressing the
                                                                                                                     innovation potential and
                                                                                                                     collaboration opportunities)
                                                                                                                     Need to take into account
                                                                                                                     corporate collective initiatives,
                                                                                                                     isolated initiative and the ability
                                                                                                                     to spread them among other
                                                                                                                     actors
                                                                                                                     Need for pragmatic views on
                                                                                                                     sustainability
Primary sources
                                                                                                                                           (continued)
Scanning “lenses                              Scope of scanning                                 Targeting approaches in the scanning process
                                                                                     Prioritization among scanning Advice regarding the scanning
Information sources     Environmental domains       Actors                           targets                           process

Interviews of experts   Environmental and           Competitors, customers, media,   Local level is considered as        Importance of geographic
                        general legislation         local governments and            fundamental                         localization
                        Technologies and            intermediary actors (e.g. TPL)   Clients and legislation are         Emphasis on group leaders’
                        techniques                  NGOs, associations               explicitly mentioned as the key     attitudes towards sustainable
                        Social issues and           New or emerging actors: from     domains to scan                     development collective
                        economics                   the social economy for example   Prioritizations are said to         spontaneous approaches
                        Politics                    Collective organizations         depend on the firm’s position in     Interdependencies between
                                                                                     the SC; whether it is a producer,   national and international (EU)
                                                                                     or a distributor                    legislations to detect
                                                                                                                         discrepancies relations between
                                                                                                                         actors (cooperation and
                                                                                                                         transparency within the SC)
                                                                                                                         Need to examine concrete
                                                                                                                         situations and solutions
                                                                                                                         Need to scan the people level
                                                                                                                         (sustainability awareness,
                                                                                                                         sustainability championship in
                                                                                                                         firms[etc.])
                                                                                                                         Taking into account the flow of
                                                                                                                         products and wastes (volume,
                                                                                                                         origin, destinations)
                                                                                                                                                   Sustainable
                                                                                                                                                 supply chains




  Table III.
                                                                                                                                  239
IJPDLM   up the first draft of our sustainable scanning framework, a conceptual framework that will
41,3     have to be validated and strengthened through further empirical studies.

         4.2 Scanning at multi-and interrelated levels
         The first and probably paramount conclusion reached from our field materials
         highlights the need to combine multi-level inter-related analyses, considering potential
240      developments, evolutions, changes and/or innovations:
            .
               In the environment as a whole (this would include a societal level).
            .
               In the network of embedded supply chains.
            .
               In the studied supply chain of the focal firm (“long-term sustainability is not a
               firm but rather a supply chain issue involving all downstream and upstream
               players” (Sigala, 2008, p. 1589)) including non-business partners and
               characterized by relations, contracts, alliances between firms.
            .
               In firms configuration, strategies and evolution.
            .
               In the dynamics of the logistics and SCM functions dealing with flows and
               activities within firms and with their partners.
            .
               In the attitudes and beliefs of supply chain managers and people. It is interesting
               to note that experts and consultants’ reports have brought to light the individual
               level of the scanning process, ignored by academics in our field study. “The
               sustainable development strategy of the group is important, but more important
               is the orientation of the people” (P1) since people must be both authors and actors
               of the changes and innovations needed to face up to sustainable issues.

         These different levels of analysis are in line with the deep and broad perspective of SCM
         and the “ultimate supply chain” framework; they appear in the different kinds of sources
         we analyzed (see the Appendix 1) and are shown by Figure 1 (Section 4.6).

         4.3 Scanning with a network perspective
         While environmental scanning mainly refers to a focal company, our research shows
         that a single company cannot exert influence over the complex and uncertain issues of
         sustainable development. “Sustainable development issues can’t be grasped at firm
         level only! That will be useless and incongruous” (P5). Therefore, to tackle sustainable
         supply chains issues, a company must collaborate with the network of firms it is
         embedded in, with governments or regulatory bodies, and making the most of every
         competence and resource available. This network level applies to the SCM highest
         degree of complexity and suggests considering new scanning targets such as: new
         intermediaries, new roles, new network structures, etc. “We must be aware of initiatives
         coming from original or unseen associations (private and public) or organizations (P6)”.
         “It is important to watch leading companies” behaviors since their demands propagate
         in their network” (E2).

         4.4 Looking for a new target approach
         The third important result is that scanning for sustainable supply chain design
         substantiates combining standard targets (with a clear emphasis upon some of them, see
         Section 4.4.) with a new way of considering interactions between factors. First of all,
         we can note the enduring validity of considering “general” and “task” environment,
                                                         Scanning scope
                                                                                                Ability to cope
                                                                                                                        Sustainable
                                                         for the focal
                                                         firm                                   with                  supply chains
                         Societal level                                                         sustainable
                                                                                                requirements
   Sustainable
    scanning
                                                                          Network level
                                                                              = the new                                            241
                                                                             focal level

                                                                           Chain level




                                                  Scope breadth            Firm level



Environmental                                                              Function level
                                                   Scope depth
  scanning



                                                                           People level




                                          The societal level includes many aspects (legislation,
                                          social, economical, environmental, political, technological)

                                          Every level relevant for scanning

                                          Levels are inter-related


                                          The supply chain concerned by a potential redesign


                                          A firm participating in the supply chain

                                          A managerial function

                                          Other supply chains that are potentially concerned

                                          Interactions between factors belonging to different
                                          scanning levels

                                                                                                                                 Figure 1.
                                          Scanning scope: depth (how many levels are included) and
                                                                                                                  The sustainable scanning
                                          breath (how large is the scanning at each level).
                                                                                                                                framework

as was observed in scanning literature. Our field material confirms the need to scan
various environmental components (such as economic or political forces) and actors
shaping the industry (customers or suppliers, for example). However, structuring
scanning with the aforementioned levels (Section 4.2.) evinces the need to pay attention
IJPDLM   to untraditional factors related to SCM and networking issues such as power forces
41,3     (see for example in Table III, explicit mention of the potential role of the industry leader
         in sustainable spread off), standards (notably the importance of “best practices”, or
         professional commitments that can pre-empt regulations), dependencies, resources and
         competences, etc. Moreover, when considering relationships between levels, new factors
         emerge. For example, linking societal and network levels requires thinking about
242      public-private interactions, e.g. organizational support for collective sustainable
         strategies, public infrastructures investments (e.g. urban platforms for waste
         management). Conversely, private initiatives “for self-regulation may be the first
         realistic step to take until national and international government organizations can
         become involved” (De Man and Burns, 2006). “Most of the innovative projects we work
         on today are developed in inter-organizational working groups that include public
         actors” (P1). Thus, some original scanning targets (Table IV) are surfacing, signaling the
         variety of actors involved in sustainable development issues (non-business actors such
         as activists, NGOs, associations at a local, national or worldwide levels, or actors coming
         from outside the industry – , i.e. originating from network level). This is a far cry from a
         restricted view of industry structure.

         4.5 Changing scanning priorities
         Our fourth result is that sustainable development requirements are likely to modify the
         prioritization of scanning. In the environmental scanning literature, the “general”
         environment is mainly used to draw development hypotheses, while the “task” or
         “immediate” environment is considered as more uncertain and thus more important to
         scan (Daft et al., 1988; Xu et al., 2003). Here, on the contrary, the societal level appears to be
         the most important one, as it concerns the highest level of uncertainty and the most
         important drivers for sustainable SCM. Legislation, whose power has already been
         confirmed with regard to implementation of environmental policies (Seitz, 2006), becomes
         one of the primary drivers with customer pressure (Prahinski and Kocabasoglu, 2006).
         Both academics and professionals point out the importance of scanning the legislation
         (“First of all, we must scan the regulations!” (P3)), whatever its geographic origin (local,
         national, and EU levels) or its formal degree (laws, standards, labels): see Table III. The
         second clear priority comes from the downstream part of the chain and returns to clients:
         customers and consumers, their awareness, commitments, expectations about
         sustainable supply chain issues. Again, this result vindicates an “ultimate supply
         chain” approach. Less attention is paid to “technology”, again suggesting a change in
         scanning priorities: according to experts, innovations rely more on organization than on
         technological solutions: technology is a trap that often generates other nuisances (P5).

         4.6 Building a sustainable scanning framework
         Our research moves “forward to the systemic issues that exist at the intersection of
         sustainability, environmental management and supply chains” (Linton et al.,
         2007, p. 1075) and complements the scanning literature while providing the outline
         of a sustainable scanning framework (shown by Figure 1 with related targets mentioned
         in Table IV) whose further validation should help companies scan their environments to
         maintain or develop sustainable supply chains.
             As mentioned in Figure 1, our sustainable scanning framework includes and goes
         beyond the scanning literature models, while promoting multi-level analysis
                                                                                                           Sustainable
Level                     Sustainable scanning targets
                                                                                                         supply chains
Societal level            Regulations (international, European, governmental, local or import
                          countries’): projects, changes, implementation (uncertainty on
                          temporality, coherence and controls), types and terms of control/
                          sanction, related taxes and incentives (e.g. eco-label) from
                          environmental or other types of legislation                                                   243
                          New markets and new economic balances (global vs local sourcing)
                          Changing demography: phenomenon of urbanization, “greying”
                          Institutions’ strategies: promote collective actions; take on activities
                          (or not), promote sustainable guidelines by means of public-purchasing
                          directives
                          Industrial professional group and trade union activities
                          Ecological organizations, socially or environmentally involved NGOs,
                          lobbies, watchdogs organizations, agencies activities and positions
                          Behaviors and opinions (pressure, demands, awareness, scrutiny) of
                          people (namely consumers, workers, citizens or investors) and of public
                          authorities
                          Influence of quotation agencies (ex: Dow Jones sustainability index),
                          of insurers or lenders
                          Value of raw materials and energy (geopolitical phenomena, resources
                          scarcity[etc.])
                          Logistics infrastructures development: ports regionalization, modal
                          shifts, green transport corridors, investments along thematic clusters
                          Public or private initiatives promoting sustainable research and
                          development programs, new technology development improving the
                          sustainability of operations (e.g. in transport)
Network level ¼ the new   Collective development of labels, standards, norms, best practices
focal level               databases, existing guidelines, voluntary agreements, and private
                          sectors initiatives for self-regulation
                          Ability to undertake lobbying activities targeting institutions
                          Network structure (number of echelons and links, relationships)
                          Role of new actors in network governance: local authorities or
                          government, social and trade associations, spontaneous collaborative
                          organizations, new intermediaries, non-business partners, external
                          consultants
                          Partnerships to develop common sustainable solutions, pioneering
                          experiences
Chain level               Roles of actors in chains, ability to take the leadership in sustainable
                          projects
                          New actors, new activities, new use of resources
                          Competitors’ green strategies
                          Development of alliances (horizontal, vertical), collaborative practices,
                          instantaneous information sharing via Internet aiming at improving
                          supply chain sustainability
                          Information systems to better evaluate physical flows (ex: in reverse
                          logistics) and chain sustainability (ex: carbon footprint)
Firm level                Firm’s maturity in logistics, SCM and sustainable development
                          thinking
                          Individual strategy of firms: resources, competences, and activities                       Table IV.
                          development aiming at improving supply chain sustainability                        Main sustainable
                          Supply of professional services by companies (ex: logistics services)       scanning targets at each
                                                                                        (continued)       level of the analysis
IJPDLM      Level                        Sustainable scanning targets
41,3
                                        Free-riding and opportunistic attitudes regarding the demands of
                                        sustainability (e.g. in matters of CO2 emissions reduction)
                                        Willingness to introduce new technologies or tools to improve
                                        performance analysis related to sustainable development
244         Function level              Technologies (recycling, alternative distribution modes [shopping from
                                        home, in store, on the go, etc.]), know-how
                                        Experimentation of pilot supply-chain solutions, technical innovations
                                        in logistics or manufacturing
                                        Resources and competencies of the firm, cultural context and
                                        environmental representations
            SC manager and people level Personal sustainable development and supply chain orientation
                                        Personal scanning orientation and practice
                                        Leadership in the company, the chain or the network (promoting new
                                        ideas, innovative frameworks or experiences and driving change at all
Table IV.                               levels)



            and stressing the importance of cooperation between firms to develop sustainable
            scanning. It also highlights the broad and deep dimensions of the scanning scope.
            To define sustainable scanning frameworks, Figure 1 and Table IV specify the different
            levels of the scanning scope and must be considered as a whole. Table IV points at each
            scanning level and for each environmental domain or actor (e.g. legislation, consumers),
            the sustainable parameters or interdependencies potentially worth scanning.
                As mentioned in Section 4.1, Table IV presents for every level of the scanning
            framework every sustainable scanning target that has been found in the case studies or
            mentioned by experts. This contribution cannot be considered as a list to be
            systematically checked when scanning at the different levels, but it could be used as a
            preliminary guideline to build a list of relevant targets. It shows the variety of parameters
            that are (and can be) considered and how “classic” scanning targets can be contextualized
            to look for information useful for sustainable supply chain design.
                The sustainable scanning framework we propose provides some outputs and
            encloses its own usage rules. Our proposals first depart from the organization to the
            network, thus allowing the identification of “outliers” (Patton, 2004), “changes coming
            from outside” while scanning literature approaches mainly seek “drivers of change in
            the industry” (Huffman, 2004). As Slaughter stated (1999, p. 446) the “world of reference
            that interests us [. . .] is not monolithic but layered and that different ‘layers’ reveal
            different phenomena”. We claim that scanning benefits from systemic thinking, and that
            “systemic models are important to anchor scanning exercises” (Tonn, 2008, p. 606)
            insofar as, when trying achieve greater sustainability, a “holistic approach is needed to
            face the problem that takes into account the relationship among all the stakeholder’s”
            (Bala et al., 2008, p. 1610).
                Second, our framework expands the nature of boundaries. Our sustainable scanning
            framework calls for exploring the importance of the territory boundary related to the
            spatial area of logistics activities; besides the obvious relevance of global issues
            (for example, “the international flow of wastes”, Tsoulfas et al., 2002, p. 152) it is worth
            pointing out “a neglect of local specificities to a large extent” (De Man and Burns, 2006, p. 2).
            Local dimensions are to be considered insofar as “a regional effect should be expected
as a result of the different levels of environmental laws and environmental awareness of                   Sustainable
local consumers and business managers” (Prahinski and Kocabasoglu, 2006, p. 529). In the                 supply chains
same way, we notice changes in temporal boundaries: significant impacts and government
regulations could last for months or even years, while others were “adopted worldwide
over a relatively short timeframe” (Linton et al., 2007, p. 1077). Finally, scanning at
network level could help forecasting the removal of boundaries between contemporary
business activities insomuch as non-business actors play an important part, and actors                           245
from outside the boundaries of the industry can highly influence the firm’s sustainable
behavior (Seitz, 2006).
   Our research (in particular the analysis of the data from primary and secondary
sources) also revealed the relationships between people’s representations of their supply
chains(s), of the network they are embedded in and of their environment, as well as their
scanning practices. To define scanning, we adopt Holmen and Pedersen’s (2003, p. 409)
statement on strategizing:
   [. . .] the ability of a firm to achieve this depends to a large extent on how well a firm is able to
   ‘read’ the network – where it is and in which directions it is moving. This, in turn, depends on
   the firm’s network horizon – the part of the network that a firm is aware of and thereby can
   take into account.
In line with this perceptual issue, the framework we propose constitutes an interpretation
itself. We thus recommend using it “for clarity, to cover and include phenomena (or actors)
that are omitted within more limited frames” (Slaughter, 1999, p. 447) because, as noted
before, “the information uncertainty of supply chains makes it impossible to trade-off
among goals and constraints within an unchanged model” (Zhou et al., 2000, p. 1151). Yet,
we do not claim that our framework substitutes other tools and we would prefer – after
further empirical study, as requested, has vindicated its validity – combining it “with
more ‘horizontal’ methods to reconcile both breadth and depth” as Slaughter (1999, p. 450)
suggested.

5. Conclusion
Focusing on sustainable supply chains leads us to apply a (systemic) gaze, looking at
phenomena from a new angle of perception thus urging scanners to develop a vision
“beyond established categories” (Neugarten, 2006 p. 903), to explore “new alternatives and
challenge the status quo way of thinking” (Veflen Olsen and Sallis, 2006, p. 51). Thus, our
sustainable scanning framework balances the “research fails to recognise SCM’s role for
further analysing sustainability issues” (Sigala, 2008, p. 1590) and draw up several results:
they provide an early conceptual answer to our research questions (Sections 1 and 2), and
lay out its managerial implications for managers confronted with sustainable development
issues who need to scan their environment before redesigning their supply chain. We asked
what companies should scan for in their supply chain environments and, more precisely,
what should be the scope, the targets and the orientation of a sustainable scanning process.
Based on our results (Section 4), we promote a wide, multi-level, scanning scope (Section 4.2)
and suggest that “sustainable scanning” cannot rely on a single organization given that it
has proved necessary to scan at network level with a supply chain orientation (Section 4.3.).
Scanning people’s attitudes, orientations and creativity (and their evolution) is part of
the scope (Section 4.2). Besides, to improve sustainable scanning, we recommend
combining standard targets with new ones and considering interactions leading
IJPDLM   to the emergence of new actors and factors to scan (Section 4.4). Finally, we observed that
41,3     sustainable developments modify scanning priorities (Section 4.5). We propose a draft for a
         sustainable scanning framework (Section 4.6) that complements existing models while
         pointing out puzzling issues related to territory and temporal boundaries. Those will have
         to be taken into account, while individual representation and scanning practices need to
         improve.
246          From a more theoretical point of view, the sustainable scanning framework offers
         part of a new scanning methodology promoting a scanning orientation using more
         adaptable and flexible practices, together with a supply chain orientation (Mentzer et al.,
         2001), thus complementing the scanning literature. The findings concerning the
         boundaries of the scanning scope (Section 4.6) have theoretical implications for SCM
         research: geographic, temporal and activity boundaries as well as matters of supply
         chain and network representation have proved relevant, thus questioning the units of
         analysis in SCM research. In line with the IMP perspective, by rejecting the idea of
         natural boundaries (networks are borderless), it is important to argue in favor of setting
         up the arbitrary boundaries (or levels of analysis) to be used in SCM. This implication is
         in line with Holmen and Pedersen’s (2003) distinction between the network context
         (the part of the network that the actor considers relevant), the network horizon
         (comprising those other firms and relationships a focal firm is aware of – whether or not
         it considers them relevant) and the environment, that begins when the horizon ends.
         As for the network context, the scanning scope is thus a matter of the firm’s
         (or the researcher’s) “choice of perspective”, which is in turn related to the firm’s
         (or the researcher’s) cognitive process.
             This is a first stage of a research program dedicated to scanning for sustainable
         supply chain design. It undoubtedly presents some limitations. First, we have chosen to
         focus on environmental scanning, a research trend in strategic management, dealing
         with the collection of relevant external data within the firm’s environment (Section 1). To
         determine the nature of the information suitable for scanning, we could also have
         explored corporate environmental management literature or research trends addressing
         the strategic orientation of the firms with regards to its supply chain or environment
         (supply strategy, strategic renewal or stakeholders’ theory for example) and presenting
         more recent approaches. Second, to widen our field material, we could have used other
         PhD dissertations from other countries and extended our research to other academic
         papers databases, along with interviewing more experts. Unsurprisingly, our field
         investigations mostly return to the “ecological” dimension of sustainable development,
         due to clear research focalization on that sustainable pillar (as mentioned by Seuring and
            ¨
         Muller, 2008) and to experts’ deeper awareness on these themes. Finally, the framework
         we propose is more a methodology than a tool, so Table IV can be considered as lacking
         in operationalization.
             This research has enabled us to generate a framework for future research. Future
         research should involve several stages which are needed to validate the usefulness of this
         conceptual framework so as to come up with managerial guidelines. First, the
         framework needs to be compared with existing day-to-day sustainable scanning
         practices and operations, through case studies and surveys conducted in companies that
         want to redesign their supply chains to face up to (or take advantage of) sustainability
         requirements. The discrepancies between framework and practices will then be
         analyzed and discussed with managers and experts distributed in focus groups.
The usefulness of the suggestions as to changing the scope, the targets and their                       Sustainable
prioritization, as well as the role of people in scanning practices, could be tested through          supply chains
action research. Thanks to such in-depth approach of sustainable scanning practices
bearing on actual sustainable SCM topics will also permit to answer questions such as:
how can companies cover such a deep and broad scope of scanning? In order to draw a
“big and relevant picture”, is it possible to develop collaborative scanning practices
within a supply chain or a company network? Can we develop tools or methods to                                247
analyze interactions between factors and “read” the overall picture provided by the
scanning results? Does the framework improve people’s representation of their
company’s supply chain and network, and does it incite them to contribute to scanning
operations? Are time and space boundaries issues useful to focus and prioritize
scanning? Future field research could also explore further research avenues related to
the determining factors for scanning practices. In particular, it could be used to check
whether scanning practices (and scanning scope) depend on the position of the company
in the chain; on the company’s future visibility (fighting for short-term survival or not);
on the partners operating in its supply chains and on the gaps in logistics, SCM and on
the sustainable maturity of the actors in the chain.


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Corresponding author
Nathalie Fabbe-Costes can be contacted at: nathalie.fabbe-costes@univmed.fr




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IJPDLM                     Appendix
41,3
                           Editor            Title                               Category                      Pages Year

                           Accenture         Sustainable supply chain            Survey                          8   2009
                           Accenture         Sustainable supply chain:           Document
252                                          creating value through
                                             sustainable packaging                                               7   2009
                           Accenture         Sustainable supply chain: a tool    SCM viewpoint                  12   2008
                                             for reinforcing shareholder value
                           ATKearney         Chain reaction                      Survey                          9   2007
                           ATKearney         Green winners                       Survey                         19   2009
                           Bearing Point     Green supply chain                  White book                     53   2008
                           Booz, Allen and   Environmental sustainability as a   Reports and studies            19   2008
                           Hamilton          driver for competitiveness
                           Boston            Sustainability and competitive      Special report in MIT Sloan     7
                           Consulting        advantage                           Management Review
                           Group
                           Cap Gemini        2016: future supply chain          Report                          52   2008
                           Cap Gemini/US     The state of logistics outsourcing 13th Annual Study               40   2008
                           LLUC
                           McKinsey          Climate change and SCM              The McKinsey Quaterly           3   2008
                           PRTM              A blue print for green              PRTM insights                   9   2008
                           PRTM              Burt’s bees: green for good         PRTM insights                   8   2008
                           Price             The sustainability agenda           Publication                    22   2008
                           Waterhouse
Table AI.                  Coopers
AI Sustainable supply      Supply Chain      Logistics: sustainability           Survey                          6   2008
chain consulting reports   Consulting        champion or laggard?

				
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