The impact of supply chain strategy on supply chain transparency over the firm lifecycle: evidence from China

Qinru Wang, Xiaobo Xu, Yonggui Wang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: In this study, the authors investigate whether supply chain (SC) strategies (lean or agile) improve or hinder the supply chain transparency (SCT) and what factors affect this relation. Design/methodology/approach: The authors measure the level of SC strategy using natural language processing based on the annual financial reports of listed firms. Secondary data analysis is conducted on various databases encompassing 1,241 listed firms in China from 2011 to 2020. Additional tests are performed to assess the robustness of the results, and alternative explanations are duly considered. Findings: The authors find that firms with an advanced level of SC strategy perform better on SCT. Furthermore, the authors observe that Agile SC strategy and Lean SC strategy have different effects on SCT over a firm’s life cycle. Agile SC strategy (the ratio of the proportion of Agile SC strategy word frequency divided by the proportion of Lean SC strategy word frequency greater than 1) has a significantly positive effect on SCT in the maturity stage; Lean SC strategy (the ratio less than 1) has a positive effect on SCT in the growth and decline stages. An increase in online media coverage negatively moderates the impact of the SC strategy (frequency of Lean and Agile SC strategy-related keywords) on SCT in the maturity stage. An increase in government environmental subsidies positively moderates the impact of SC strategy on SCT in the maturity and decline stages. Additionally, an increase in industrial competition intensity positively moderates the impact of the SC strategy on SCT in the decline stage. Originality/value: The authors' study contributes to the Operations and Supply Chain Management (OSCM) literature by revealing the positive impact of SC strategy on SCT with objective secondary data. Additionally, the authors examine the moderating effects of moderators over the lifecycle of a firm on this relationship in an emerging market context. The authors' findings offer valuable guidance to companies operating in diverse market environments, providing actionable insights to strengthen their SC strategies and enhance SCT.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Operations and Production Management
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Firm lifecycle
  • Industry competition
  • Supply chain strategy
  • Supply chain transparency

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