Supply Chain Management at the base of the pyramid

The provision of tailored goods to poor communities and their involvement in supply chains have become a growing research area often captured under the label "base of the pyramid" approaches. The challenge is whether the base-of-the-pyramid approach constitutes sustainable supply within resource-poor socio-ecology environments. This research project thus seeks to understand how supply chain management concepts can be applied to appropriately integrate the base of the pyramid into value creation.

Expected Contribution to the Decent Work Agenda

There is an existing body of knowledge on "base of the pyramid" as well as sustainable supply chain management. The aim of the project is to explore these two fields and merge them fruitfully both conceptually and in practice. Supply chain management thought offers promising ideas to be applied in the base-of-the-pyramid solutions. Thus poor communities are empowered and their living standard is raised, while a vast potential of creativity and productivity can be tapped.

Contribution to the Decent Work Agenda

There is an existing body of knowledge on "base of the pyramid" as well as sustainable supply chain management. The project explored how these two fields can be merged fruitfully both conceptually and in practice. Supply chain management thought offers promising ideas to be applied in the base-of-the-pyramid solutions. Thus poor communities are empowered and their living standard is raised, while a vast potential of creativity and productivity can be tapped.
The following papers have been published based on the project:

  • C Schrader, J Freimann, S Seuring (2012): Business strategy at the base of the pyramid, Business Strategy and the environment 21 (5), 281-298.

  • The paper sets Base of the pyramid projects into the context of the strategic management process.

  • S Gold, R Hahn, S Seuring (2013): Sustainable supply chain management in “Base of the Pyramid” food projects—A path to triple bottom line approaches for multinationals?, International Business Review 22 (5), 784-799.
    This is the first empirical paper based on three case studies at the intersection of Base of the Pyramid and Sustainable Supply Chain Management.

  • R Hahn, S Gold (2014): Resources and Governance in ‘Base of the Pyramid’ Partnerships: Assessing Collaborations between Businesses and Non-Business Actors, Journal of Business Research 67 (7), 1321-1333.
    This empirical paper also builds on case studies and discusses how partnerships between business and non-business actors at the Base of the Pyramid are identified, built, and maintained.