Affiliated Organization

Case Western Reserve University, USA


Increasingly often we hear that ‘we are entering the era of network competition’ and that corporations increasingly recognize that they are competing as supply chains and not as firms (Hammer, 2001). What makes such statements interesting is the presumption that we already know a lot about the constitution of networks and supply chains. This paper is based on case studies of two firms at the very beginning of their SCM journey. Our research is driven by the following questions: How do supply chains come about? How does supply chain management responsiveness result? Our research suggests why it is important to recognize that Supply Chain Management does not begin at the gates of the company. Paradoxically, external supply chain responsiveness has more to do with the internal coordination of managerial and technical activities than current SCM theories anticipate.