Exploring supply chain collaboration of the manufacturing firms in China

Gu, M 2016, Exploring supply chain collaboration of the manufacturing firms in China, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Business IT and Logistics, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Exploring supply chain collaboration of the manufacturing firms in China
Author(s) Gu, M
Year 2016
Abstract In the past three decades, China has become the manufacturing hub of the world through its robust economic development momentum. Since the outbreak of the financial crisis in 2008, however, the Chinese manufacturing industry has suffered an unprecedented slowdown while the world economy has experienced only sluggish progress. Studies reavel that the low value-adding, labour-intensive, export-oriented development model of the Chinese manufacturing industry has become inappropriate and requires upgrading. As many leading world manufacturing firms have engaged in sophisticated supply chain collaboration (SCC) initiatives to enhance their competitive edge, it has become vital for Chinese manufacturing firms to embark on SCC to retain competitiveness.

The present study explores how effectively SCC is being implemented by electrical and electronic (E & E) manufacturing firms in China, through the identification of key elements and major barriers. It also attempts to develop a capability-based strategic framework to aid Chinese manufacturing firms to improve their collaborative capability so as to enhance competitiveness.

This thesis integrates insights from multiple theoretical perspectives, including Agency Theory (AT), Social Exchange Theory (SET), Extended Resource Based View (ERBV), and Institutional Theory, to enable a broader understanding of the implementation practices of SCC by Chinese manufacturers. A multiple-case study method was used to collect data from four leading E & E manufacturers in China for analysis.

The findings of this study reveal some unique characteristics of SCC in China. Various Western SCC practices are partially imitated by Chinese manufacturing firms (CMFs) to maximize their own short-term benefits at the expense of overall SC performance and efficiency. The collaborative capabilities of CMFs, manifested in objective alignment, SC partnering, information sharing, process integration, and collaborative synchronization, are in general not mature. Existing institutional barriers, such as traditional Chinese culture, lack of trust, and insufficient government effort and innovation, are found to exert significant negative influences on the implementation of SCC initiatives.

In an effort to help the industry achieve advanced synchronization capabilities, a capability-based strategic framework has been proposed, which depicts how the key elements and major barriers can impact on the successful implementation of collaborative initiatives. This framework can serve as a comprehensive guide for CMFs to make continuous improvement in this regard.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Business IT and Logistics
Subjects Logistics and Supply Chain Management
Keyword(s) Supply Chain Collaboration
Supply Chain Management
Supply Chain Integration
Manufacturing Firms
China
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