Journal on Chain and Network Science

Journal Information
ISSN / EISSN : 1569-1829 / 1875-0931
Published by: Wageningen Academic Publishers (10.3920)
Total articles ≅ 225
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Latest articles in this journal

P.J.P. Garbade, S.W.F. Omta, F.T.J.M. Fortuin
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 117-134;

The present paper aims to extend the discussion in the governance literature about whether structural and relational governance mechanisms complement or substitute each other in innovation alliances. Where structural governance mechanisms refer to the division of tasks within the alliance and to upfront contractual and non-contractual input, output and risk-related agreements, relational governance mechanisms refer to trust, using informal norms and rules for coordination purposes. In innovation literature much attention has been paid to relational governance, which is expected to offer more of the flexibility needed for innovation than the regulations in structural governance that are perceived as rigid. However, the authors argue that the essential role of structural governance as a solid basis for creating trust, especially in alliances in which the partners do not know each other, is clearly underexposed in management literature. To fill this gap, a model conceptualizing the innovation alliance from inception to performance was tested using Partial Least Squares, employing a cross-sectional dataset of 94 innovation alliances in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Austria. The results do indeed show the essential role of structural agreements in creating a platform for trust on which relational governance can strive, while a clear task division can help to reduce the complexity of the inter-organizational innovation process, by reducing the interdependency of the partners. Both structural mechanisms ease communication among the alliance partners, leading to a higher level of knowledge exchange, and ultimately leading to better alliance performance.
M. Kayser, , L. Theuvsen
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 135-146;

German horticulture earns 21.2% of the total production value of German agriculture – on merely 1.3% of the total production area. Despite this important economic standing, agricultural economic research focuses more on other agricultural sectors like meat or milk supply chains. The present study aims to analyze the organization of the horticulture supply chain. In order to fill this gap in research, the impact of various management instruments on performance at an individual farm level as well as in the whole horticultural supply chain get analyzed by using the partial least square method. For this, German vegetable farmers participated in an online survey in 2013. The innovative empirical analysis thereby is based on existing literature and the contingency theory. The results show that the individual farm performance is positively influenced by factor endowment of the farms as well as by trust and business climate between the different levels of the supply chain. In contrast, the external situation of the farms does not exert any meaningful influence on farm performance but on organizational farm parameters of the supply chain.
S.W.F. Onno Omta, , W.A. Theo Camps, Loic Sauvee
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 171-171;

, V.E. Scholten, E.F.M. Wubben, S.W.F. Omta
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 95-115;

We investigate the influence of entrepreneurial orientation and team efficacy, in addition to the impact of domain-specific industry and research experience of spin-off management teams, on absorptive capacity, both potential and realised. A multiple regression analysis in 95 Dutch high-tech academic spin-offs indicates that entrepreneurial orientation and domain-specific research experience are positively related to potential absorptive capacity while entrepreneurial orientation, team efficacy and domain-specific industry experience are positively related to realised absorptive capacity. Analyses of the explained variance show that entrepreneurial orientation and team efficacy provide a higher contribution to absorptive capacity than domain-specific experience, which contributes to recent debates on antecedents of absorptive capacity for academic spin-offs.
, R.B. Ross, H.R. Gow, H.C. Peterson, R. Black
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 83-93;

This paper presents an empirical examination of investment responses to external facilitation of supply chain linkages between agricultural producers and processors. Specifically, it analyzes the impact of participation in the USDA Marketing Assistance Program (MAP) facilitated formal marketing channel on farm-level investments in tomato production. The analysis involves mixed method approach utilizing a case of the USDA MAP in the Armenian vegetable industry and the survey data from 427 Armenian tomato growers. The main results indicate that the tomato growers linked to USDA MAP facilitated formal marketing channel (i.e. processors) invested significantly more in expanding tomato planting area compared to growers in informal channel (i.e. direct-to-consumer markets, middleman, and barter). The lessons from the USDA MAP’s supply chain facilitation strategy and the results of quantitative analysis provide insights on incentive structures and enforcement mechanisms for designing more effective supply chain linkages.
, M. Mbugua, J. Oduol
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 147-156;

Access to markets is one important strategy which can assist smallholder farmers to move out of poverty. Collective action through farmers' groups has been identified as a strategy to improve the participation of farmers in markets. This study analyzes the determinants of participation and intensity of participation of collective action in production and marketing of avocado in Kenya. Group participation and the intensity were modelled as a binary choice decision and analyzed using logit models. Interviews were conducted with 301 farmers in avocado production zones in Kenya. The result showed that age, education, gender and perceptions on knowledge and improved technology influence farmers' decision to participate in group activities. Occupation, area of residence and farmers' perception on knowledge and improved technology use, and economic benefits had a significant influence on the intensity of participation. We conclude that it is crucial to educate farmers through trainings, workshops and seminars before group formation in order to ensure that they understand the importance and impacts of collective action. Finally, development practitioners and government organizations which intend to intervene through farmers' groups should understand farmers' perceptions and hence expectations from the groups.
, A.A.C. Carnaúba, , , E. Armando
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 157-170;

The present study aimed at verifying how different modes of governance structure are linked to different levels of interorganisational trust. Its theoretical grounding involves Transaction Cost Theory, which studies governance of interorganisational arrangements and research on trust in the business field. A descriptive and quantitative approach has been adopted to describe the relation between trust amongst business network participants and the mode of governance adopted by the surveyed networks. Hence, a detailed questionnaire has been employed, which was answered by 35 real estate agency managers, whose participation was directly linked to 11 business networks. By using Spearman methods of identification of non-parametric correlation and correspondence analysis, it was possible to verify that certain modes of governance structure associate with different levels of trust. Considering the scarcity of quantitative research on the theme, this paper contributes to the field by presenting results which point out that collectively-managed governance of regional cooperation networks is linked to high levels of trust; whereas governance of dispersed networks with the presence of a lead company are linked to low levels of trust. Medium levels of trust were observed in networks governed by an administrative organisation. Considering the practical aspect of administration in networks, one can conclude that the process of governance structure in such interorganisational arrangements should include deliberations about the influence of the adopted mode of governance on trust amongst participants. The paper does not allow generalizations of its conclusions beyond its chosen sample.
, G.N. Francesconi
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 29-40;

We use recent data from 253 smallholder producer organisations (SPOs) in Ethiopia, Malawi and Senegal, factor and regression analysis to define organisational health, understand its determinants and relate health to performance. We find that latent health evolves according to a life cycle and that start up incentives and design rules are important determinants of an organisation’s progression through this life cycle. Health, in turn, is found to explain SPO performance measured in terms of profits. Healthier and more profitable SPOs are those with an economic justification at establishment, those initially pursuing defensive objectives and those SPOs that have put in place a strategy for capital formation. More educated presidents contribute to the health of an SPO but it is also shown that when the president of the SPO is female, profits are lower while the organisation is not healthier.
M.L. Cook,
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 19-27;

For years, scholars and policy makers have ar gued that cooperatives, particularly agricultural cooperatives, exhibit organizational inefficiencies primarily caused by individual member behavior that is often independent and non-cooperative conflicting with the formation of effective coalition building. This free riding tendency creates significant challenges for a continued joint collaboration between and among member patrons. Yet, agricultural cooperatives have a long history of surviving as successful business enterprises. This paper presents a framework that proposes generic solutions effective as design principles in addressing the negative consequences of high organization costs, thus leading to sustainable common group interest activities.
S.A. Pérez Perdomo, , J.H. Trienekens, S.W.F. Omta
Journal on Chain and Network Science, Volume 16, pp 59-82;

The Sub-Saharan African smallholder agricultural sector faces multiple and usually complex challenges, which can potentially be overcome by collective action. Smallholder farmers and other value chain stakeholders can tackle temporal, structural and contextual challenges by joining multi-level innovation networks to benefit collectively from shared information, knowledge, improved capacities and economies of scale in a process of innovation. Ambidexterity is a capability of innovation networks to balance exploration and exploitation dynamics in an innovation process, and is applicable at multiple levels: individuals, leaders, champions, teams and clusters. In the paradigm of open innovation, these levels become intertwined in hybrid social structures of innovation netchains. The objective of this paper is to describe the roles and identify the stakeholders that play those roles in an innovation process. We present case studies on farmer groups who participate in collective action and we compare multi-stakeholder platforms with other configurations of actors that tackle challenges in potato netchains in three Sub-Saharan African countries. We track and analyse innovation trajectories for six cases adapting netchain analysis techniques linking roles with the challenges faced at particular stages of each innovation trajectory. We find three management designs for fostering exploration and exploitation: (1) exploratory or exploitative management designs for small innovation networks; (2) exploitative management designs for larger networks; and (3) ambidextrous management designs for multi-stakeholder networks. Traditional roles played by managers are identified to manage exploration and exploitation in an ambidextrous way, but also evidence of roles of civil society actors facilitating collective action for the emergence of multi-stakeholder cooperatives. Since ambidexterity is about dynamism, we identified three types of mobility to be fostered when tackling challenges in an innovation process: (1) mobility-dynamism of the innovation process over time; (2) structural-knowledge mobility in innovation networks; and (3) boundary mobility.
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