The top global companies and internationally renowned academic researchers recognize the importance of environmental issues and sustainability for innovation and sustainable growth. Research on how to integrate environmental issues with operations has pointed out opportunities and laid down a research agenda. In spite of all this, sustainability is not yet holistically integrated in supply chain management research. In this paper we make use of behavioral theory and abductive reasoning to explain the current lack of integration. Abductive reasoning is a rather novel form of reasoning (when compared with deductive or inductive reasoning), where understanding is sought from a set of explanations of which, through the process of reasoning, some explanations will prevail, i.e. will 'abduct' others to be discarded. We conclude through abductive reasoning that the reasons for procrastinating the holistic integration of sustainability in supply chain research are the conflicting nature of the task and the inherent context (operations rather than environmental or social issues).

Additional Metadata
Keywords Abductive reasoning, Engineering research, Innovation, Management, Procrastination, Supply chain management, Supply chains, Sustainability, Sustainable development, Technological forecasting
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1109/IEMCE.2008.4618016, hdl.handle.net/1765/14702
Citation
de Brito, M.P, & van der Laan, E.A. (2008). Supply chain management and sustainability: Procrastinating a holistic integration. doi:10.1109/IEMCE.2008.4618016