Supplier Engagement in the Sustainable Innovation Process: A Qualitative Analysis of Austrian SMEs

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelBegutachtung

Abstract

In order to capitalize on the opportunities offered by changing dynamics and structures, companies need to innovate constantly and sustainably. Despite the fact that opening up the innovation process to include stakeholders can increase companies’ innovation performance and reputation, the concepts of stakeholder engagement and innovation have so far remained rather isolated from each other (Gould, J Technol Manage Innov 7:1–11, 2012). As little is known about how stakeholder engagement is used in the innovation process of SMEs, this study is focused on the importance of supplier engagement for creating sustainable innovations. The analysis shows that suppliers play a stimulating role for SMEs and are increasingly becoming a valuable partner in their innovation process. Collaborating with suppliers is a means to exchange experiences and information on best practices and offers benefits such as operational cost savings, further partnership opportunities along with a better approach to emerging consumer concerns. Technological, social and environmental innovation is necessary to bring about sustainability, and a supplier partnership approach is critical for achieving results. © 2018, Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature.
OriginalspracheEnglisch
Seiten (von - bis)335-345
Seitenumfang11
FachzeitschriftCSR, Sustainability, Ethics and Governance
DOIs
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 22 Sep. 2018

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