Competitive benefits & incentivisation at internal, supply chain & societal level circular operations in UK agri-food SMEs

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Abstract

Circular operations offer embedded environmental and economic benefits, with promise to tackle ecological degradation. Circular operations also offer competitive benefits for the firm or supply chain, but these have been widely overlooked. Competitive benefits are important, helping to mitigate barriers of cost and risk and incentivise implementation of circular operations. Adopting a qualitative multi-method approach, this study explores implementation of the circular economy at internal, supply chain and societal levels in UK agri-food SMEs. A natural-resource-based view theoretical lens underpins exploitation of competitive benefits at each level and explains their role in incentivisation. Whilst environmental-economic benefits remain embedded, competitive benefits are brought to the fore. This supports the argument that circular operations can be implemented to purposefully seek competitive gain rather than as an environmental obligation. This new competitive perspective promotes appeal and approachability to circular operations, particularly for agri-food SMEs where implementation may be problematic.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1149-1162
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Business Research
Volume144
Early online date24 Feb 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24 Feb 2022

Keywords

  • circular operations
  • competitive benefits
  • natural-resource-based view
  • agri-food

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