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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2014, Article ID 897121, 16 pages
Research Article

Sustainable Supply Chain Design: A Configurational Approach

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Centre for Product Design and Manufacturing (CPDM), Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia

Received 16 October 2013; Accepted 24 November 2013; Published 12 January 2014

Academic Editors: Z. Ayag, W.-C. Hong, and W.-C. Lee

Copyright © 2014 S. Maryam Masoumik et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Designing the right supply chain that meets the requirements of sustainable development is a significant challenge. Although there are a considerable number of studies on issues relating to sustainable supply chain design (SSCD) in terms of designing the practices, processes, and structures, they have rarely demonstrated how these components can be aligned to form an effective sustainable supply chain (SSC). Considering this gap in the literature, this study adopts the configurational approach to develop a conceptual framework that could configure the components of a SSC. In this respect, a process-oriented approach is utilized to classify and harmonize the design components. A natural-resource-based view (NRBV) is adopted to determine the central theme to align the design components around. The proposed framework presents three types of SSC, namely, efficient SSC, innovative SSC, and reputed SSC. The study culminates with recommendations concerning the direction for future research.