Facilitating Collaboration in e-Supply Chain Systems: An Action Learning-Based Approach

Timothy McNichols, Louis Brennan, H.G.A. Middel

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constructing long-term collaborative partnerships. Often firms introduce e-enabled systems to integrate strategic suppliers into collaborative networks. But in reality, many of these collaborative supply chain systems have underperformed or been terminated. Often these inter-organisational systems achieve gains in operational performance but fall short of relationship change. However to maximise the potential of an integrated system, participants need to learn ‘the art of collaboration’ with supply chain partners and manage a difficult change process. Achieving a successful implementation requires a formal intervention programme to improve integration in the group by facilitating behavioural as well as technical change. One intervention technique is “action learning”. This approach focuses on learning from experience in a practical organisational context to cultivate behavioural change and collaborative practice. In this paper, the authors identify the key elements of an action learning programme created to promote behavioural change in the implementation of an Internet-based collaborative supply chain system. Based upon empirical data from an EC-Funded Fifth Framework Project, the impact of this formal integration programme is assessed.
Original languageUndefined
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Event14th European Conference on Information Systems, ECIS 2006 - Göteborg, Sweden
Duration: 12 Jun 200614 Jun 2006
Conference number: 14


Conference14th European Conference on Information Systems, ECIS 2006
Abbreviated titleECIS


  • Inter-Organisational Systems
  • Integration
  • Internet
  • Supply Chain
  • Action Learning
  • Collaboration
  • Change
  • IR-57951

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