Development of a risk-oriented strategic sourcing (ROSS) framework for the construction and electronics manufacturing industries

  • Martin Kotula

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Business Administration


Strategic sourcing has increased in importance in recent years, and now plays an important role in companies’ planning. The current volatility in supply markets means companies face multiple challenges involving lock-in situations, supplier bankruptcies or supply security issues. In addition, their exposure can increase due to natural disasters, as witnessed recently in the form of bird flu, volcanic ash and tsunamis. Therefore, the primary focus of this study is risk management in the context of strategic sourcing. The study presents a literature review on sourcing based on the 15 years from 1998–2012, and considers 131 academic articles. The literature describes strategic sourcing as a strategic, holistic process in managing supplier relationships, with a long-term focus on adding value to the company and realising competitive advantage. Few studies discovered the real risk impact and status of risk management in strategic sourcing, and evaluation across countries and industries was limited, with the construction sector particularly under-researched.
This methodology is founded on a qualitative study of twenty cases across Ger-many and the United Kingdom from the construction sector and electronics manufacturing industries. While considering risk management in the context of strategic sourcing, the thesis takes into account six dimensions that cover trends in strategic sourcing, theoretical and practical sourcing models, risk management, supply and demand management, critical success factors and the strategic supplier evaluation. The study contributes in several ways. First, recent trends are traced and future needs identified across the research dimensions of countries, industries and companies. Second, it evaluates critical success factors in contemporary strategic sourcing. Third, it explores the application of theoretical and practical sourcing models in terms of effectiveness and sustainability. Fourth, based on the case study findings, a risk-oriented strategic sourcing framework and a model for strategic sourcing are developed. These are based on the validation of contemporary requirements and a critical evaluation of the existing situation. It contemplates the empirical findings and leads to a structured process to manage risk in strategic sourcing. The risk-oriented framework considers areas such as trends, corporate and sourcing strategy, critical success factors, strategic supplier selection criteria, risk assessment, reporting, strategy alignment and reporting. The proposed model highlights the essential dimensions in strategic sourcing and guides us to a new definition of strategic sourcing supported by this empirical study.
Date of Award19 Jun 2013
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Aston University
SupervisorPrasanta Dey (Supervisor) & William Ho (Supervisor)


  • strategic sourcing
  • risk-oriented strategic sourcing
  • supply chain risk management
  • sourcing in construction industry
  • sourcing in electronics manufacturing industry

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