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Disruptive digital technology adoption in global supply chains

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Businesses need to cope with myriad challenges including increasingly competitive markets and rapid developments in digital technology. The overall aim of the research described in this paper is to generate fresh insights into the impacts of digitalisation on the design and management of global supply chains. It focuses on understanding the current adoption rate of new technologies in global supply chains, identifying perceived opportunities and challenges and clarifying the critical factors driving (and inhibiting) their deployment. The authors administered an online survey with a global sample of respondents from various supply chain functions, resulting in a sample of 142 responses. Significant differences emerged in adoption patterns between companies of different sizes. Moreover, the study pointed to a widening gap (or a ‘digital divide’) between leaders and laggards in terms of technology adoption. Perceived benefits and challenges also differ notably between companies of varying sizes. Adoption patterns are very diverse across specific technologies. The results further suggest that there is a significant correlation between adoption of digital technologies and different dimensions of company performance.

Keywords: digitalisation; disruption; global; supply chain management

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Aston Logistics & Systems Institute, School of Engineering and Applied Science, Aston University, Birmingham 2: ESB Business School, Reutlingen University 3: ESB Business School, Reutlingen University, Alteburgstrasse 150

Publication date: January 1, 2020

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  • Journal of Supply Chain Management, Logistics and Procurement is the major new peer-reviewed journal publishing in-depth articles and case studies on new thinking, innovative practices and emerging issues in how to deliver cost effective, efficient, resilient and adaptable supply chain management, logistics and procurement. It will examine key practical issues from a business, risk and operational perspective in a high quality format which seeks to fill the gap between trade magazines and purely academic journals.
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