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Joerg Hofstetter

KEDGE Business School, France

Dr. Joerg S. Hofstetter, an expert in sustainability, procurement and multinational multi-tier value chains with over 20 years of experience, is Associate Professor in Supply Chain Management at KEDGE Business School Bordeaux, President of the International Forum on Sustainable Value Chains (ISVC), Lecturer at the University of St. Gallen, and Fellow of the Center for Organization Research & Design (CORD) at Arizona State University. He consulted various national government and intergovernmental organizations (including the OECD, the World Bank Group) as well as over 100 private and public companies across different industries, and is non-executive board member in the private sector. He is a founding member of the GRONEN Foundation, a member of Future Earth’s Working Groups on Circular Economy and Global Value Chains, a member of the Green Growth Knowledge Platform’s Trade & Competitiveness Research Committee, and involved in several UNIDO working groups. Previously, he served at the University of St. Gallen as Vice Director of its Chair of Logistics Management and Assistant Professor of Management.

Dr. Hofstetter, a German national, has extensive knowledge in sustainability, circular economy, sustainability in multinational multi-tier supply chains, sustainability in procurement, global value chains, value chain mapping, sub-supplier management, supplier development, distribution management, and corporate supply chain management. He received several substantial public and private research grants, works internationally with both the public and the private sector, and published in leading academic journals, expert journals and books.

Under Dr. Hofstetter’s leadership, the International Forum on Sustainable Value Chains (ISVC), a Switzerland based non-profit association, has become a recognized academia-led platform with members from different parts of the world and sectors developing and implementing scientifically proven, hands-on solutions to master the many sustainability challenges in global value chains.

He holds a M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Stuttgart, Germany, and a Ph.D. in Management from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland. He lives in Zürich, Switzerland with his wife, an international IPR lawyer and senior manager, and their daughter.
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publication
Recommendations for Conducting Service-Dominant Logic Research

In the digital age, companies compete on how well their service meets customer needs and solves customer problems, interacting with ever more actors to fulfill their promise. A well-suited mid-range theory to conduct research in this “new” world is service-dominant (S-D) logic. However, there are no guidelines or a commonly agreed framework for systematically conducting S-D logic research. To fill this gap, this chapter reviews and analyzes the use of S-D logic in research. It provides recommendations for conducting S-D logic in research and proposes an organizing framework for applied research settings and beyond.

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publication
The effect of institutional pressures on business-led interventions to improve social compliance among emerging market suppliers in global value chains

Emerging market governments are incented to attract global value chain (GVC) activities to fuel economic growth. At the same time, in light of real and perceived workplace-related injustices within emerging markets, GVC lead firms are under pressure to improve social standard compliance within their upstream supply chain. Among the most common approaches to achieve these outcomes is to impose standards of conduct that are vetted by on-site audits. Research has shown, however, that improvement in GVC performance using this approach has been slow and sometimes leads to negative consequences, leading us to our research question: under what conditions do interventions by GVC lead firms yield significant improvements in social standards among upstream supplier workplaces? We hypothesize that a country’s institutions not only have direct effects on social upgrading but also indirectly affect the ability of third parties to bring about social compliance. Our findings, based on two longitudinal datasets, suggest that GVC lead firms must account for the unique country-level institutional pressures that either propel or hamper improvement over time in private social standard compliance among upstream suppliers. In addition, governments must develop new policy responses to target the prevailing institutional pressures that dampen social upgrading if they are to attract and retain GVC investment.

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publication
Multi-tier sustainable supply chain management

A focal company’s boundary of accountability for social or environmental misconduct in its supply chain is hard to define. Non-sustainable business practices can occur at all stages in the supply chain: at raw material exploitation, intermediate production, or transportation. And it can occur atany tier of supplier. Thus investigating multi-tier supply chain sustainability is critical. This chapter argues for the relevance of sub-tier suppliers’ supply chains. Included in the discussion is institutionalizing sustainability standards throughout the entire supply chain, and the role of multi-tier analysis. Background on transparency and impact on sub-suppliers, drivers for active sub-supplier management, and critical factors for sub-supplier management are all introduced. Research implications and directions complete this chapter.

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publication
Interrelationships amongst factors for sub-supplier corporate sustainability standards compliance: An exploratory field study

Sub-supplier compliance with a focal firm's corporate sustainability standards (CSS) is increasingly recognized as an important dimension of sustainable supply chain management. This paper draws on recent sub-supplier management studies and their critical success factors (CSFs) to investigate the interrelationships between and strengths of CSFs. While previous research focused on the perspective and practices only of focal firms, this exploratory field study investigated a focal firm, one of its suppliers and one of its sub-suppliers in a multi-tier supply chain setting. Our findings suggest that sub-supplier assessment and collaboration are influenced by (1) the committed long-term relationship between the direct supplier and the sub-supplier, (2) the involvement of the direct supplier, and (3) the focal firm's buyer-power over the direct supplier. In return, sub-supplier assessment and collaboration influence those and further CSFs in a feedback loop, enabling virtuous or vicious cycle effects. The perspective of the sub-supplier revealed substantial differences to the supplier and the focal firm, in particular the lower feedback loop effect of collaboration on CSFs.

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