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Small firms and e-business: cautiousness, contingency and cost-benefit

Lookup NU author(s): Maria Woerndl


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This paper examines how e-business affects small firms in supply chains. Research in four UK supply chain cases, assistive/medical technology, construction, computer consumables and apparel, indicate widening gaps between large and small firm investment and strategy for exploitation of e-business. Existing models of e-business operationalisation are critically evaluated; and their appropriateness in providing insight and guidance is reflected on. While each model individually provides some useful insights, none are appropriate for examining small firm take up of e-business. Therefore a new framework is developed based on three key issues—cautiousness, contingency and cost-benefit.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Zheng J, Caldwell N, Harland CM, Powell P, Woerndl M, Xu S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management

Year: 2004

Volume: 10

Issue: 1

Pages: 27-39

ISSN (print): 1478-4092

ISSN (electronic): 1873-6505

Publisher: Pergamon


DOI: 10.1016/j.pursup.2003.11.004


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