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Journal cover: Journal of Enterprise Information Management

Journal of Enterprise Information Management

ISSN: 1741-0398
Previously published as: Logistics Information Management

Online from: 2004

Subject Area: Information and Knowledge Management

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The intellectual structure of the supply chain management discipline: A citation and social network analysis

Document Information:
Title:The intellectual structure of the supply chain management discipline: A citation and social network analysis
Author(s):Mihalis Giannakis, (Warwick Business School, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK)
Citation:Mihalis Giannakis, (2012) "The intellectual structure of the supply chain management discipline: A citation and social network analysis", Journal of Enterprise Information Management, Vol. 25 Iss: 2, pp.136 - 169
Keywords:Bibliometric study, Citation analysis, Journals, Social network analysis, Supply chain management
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/17410391211204392 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Purpose – This paper aims to explore the way that the intellectual structure of the SCM discipline has been shaped over the last 20 years. The discipline is represented by the papers that are published in a network of ten leading academic journals in the field. As the SCM literature has grown, the analysis of the way that the characteristics of this network of journals have changed over time enables the identification of salient challenges facing SCM theory and practice for the new decade.

Design/methodology/approach – A combination of social network and citation analyses among the selected journals is applied. Citations between and within journals are collected and analysed using social network analysis metrics, that assess the communication patterns between and among the journals, the cohesion of the network and the role that each of the journals has performed (and is acquiring) in the dissemination of knowledge.

Findings – The analysis reveals that the current structure of the network of journals is characterised by an evident shift of focus of operations management journals towards more SCM phenomena, the cohesion of the discipline has improved but is still fragmented due to a lack of reciprocal co-citations among the journals, and the emergence of three distinctive clusters in the network.

Research limitations/implications – The study reflects the growth of supply chain management, by studying an eclectic number of academic journals over the past 20 years, but can be extended beyond this period and it can include more academic and practitioner journals to examine its extended problem domain.

Practical implications – The study confirms the inter-disciplinary nature of supply chain phenomena and the opportunity for research in SCM to acquire a central role in the study of inter-organisational systems.

Originality/value – Bibliographic studies have been conducted in the past in several (more established) disciplines. The study of where knowledge is communicated with co-citations among papers and journals provides concrete evidence of the changing characteristics of an academic discipline. The SCM discipline is maturing as an academic discipline and the analysis of its intellectual structure can assist in establishing its legitimacy and future expansion.

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