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2024/2025  KAN-CCMVV2440U  Global Sourcing Management: A Sustainable Procurement Perspective

English Title
Global Sourcing Management: A Sustainable Procurement Perspective

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Quarter
Start time of the course First Quarter
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for cand.merc. and GMA (CM)
Course coordinator
  • Kim Sundtoft Hald - Department of Operations Management (OM)
Main academic disciplines
  • CSR and sustainability
  • Globalisation and international business
  • Supply chain management and logistics
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 13-02-2024

Relevant links

Learning objectives
Students should demonstrate the ability to provide an in-depth study of a problem of practical and scientific relevance to the area of "global sourcing management from a sustainable procurement perspective". The learning objectives are demonstrated in the exam to the degree to which students can:
  • Identify and motivate a problem of relevance to global sourcing management from a sustainable procurement perspective.
  • Formulate a delimited and precise research question addressing the identified problem.
  • Provide a thorough theoretical review of the course literature to define and operationalise key constructs and to identify the relevant theoretical gaps.
  • Apply relevant theories and models from the course curriculum to analyse the problem.
  • Critically reflect on the theoretical and practical implications of the analysis.
Global Sourcing Management: A Sustainable Procurement Perspective:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 15 pages
Assignment type Project
Release of assignment Subject chosen by students themselves, see guidelines if any
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Autumn
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
If the student fails the ordinary exam the student will have to hand in a revised product for the re-take or a new project.
Description of the exam procedure

The student selects a case/topic from within the course and formulates a delimited problem statement. The student analyses the case/topic using the theories, models and frameworks introduced in that course. It is expected that the student produces a project that incorporates and refers to a substantial amount of literature from the course curriculum.

Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

The global society is increasingly engaged in endeavors to transition into a greener future, and this builds pressure on companies in terms of playing an active role in achieving the new ambitious environmental objectives. However, as the environmental impact of a company reaches far outside its own local production, reducing this impact is a complex and challenging task that involves the active participation of many supply chain actors. Specifically, the purchasing and supply management function plays a fundamental role in dealing with the environmental impact in the supply network. In this course, we set out to explore:


  • How purchasing and supply management processes are designed and practiced to transition the supply network to higher levels of environmental sustainability.


The focus of the course is dual as we are interested in understanding the practices and decision-making that take place inside the buying organization, but also in how the purchasing and supply management function engages with and are dependent on suppliers to push the green agenda upstream in the supply network.


In this course, we explore how procurement managers perform global sourcing activities and how traditional sourcing practices can be understood to require change when the ambition is a sustainable supply network. Thus the course will both provide in depth knowledge about traditional strategic procurement and sourcing practices, but also engage in an analysis of strategic change designed to transition towards sustainable procurement practices.   


A central ambition is to understand how different types of structures, processes, incentives and relationships both inside the organization and in the global supply network can be understood to enable or hinder change designed to improve environmental performance. Such an ambition is fundamental as global supply networks often account for a substantial part of the focal buying organizations environmental footprint.


In the course we will adopt different theoretical lenses, such as theories from the domains of operations and supply chain management, organizational studies, sociology, and performance management. These different theoretical perspectives will help us understand the complexity of managing global sourcing from a sustainable procurement perspective. The different and often complementary theoretical perspectives will further help us reflect on how to design and implement strategies and specific practices to deal with this complexity.

Description of the teaching methods
The course is dialogue-based and facilitates a high degree of student engagement and involvement.

A variety of teaching methods are used in the course. Cases and exercises are discussed and analysed to enable practical experience in applying the different theoretical perspectives and models unfolded in the course. This will lead to a reflection of the practical and theoretical implications of the analysis.

For students interested in developing robust ideas for a subsequent empirical project work (e.g. The master thesis), the course is supporting this via the exam format and feedback opportunities from course faculty. This aspect can e.g. be used for students interested in writing their master thesis in collaboration with the Sustainable Procurement Research initiative (see also “Further Information”).
Feedback during the teaching period
Students will have the opportunity to receive feedback during the teaching period via different channels:
1) During class discussions.
2) Based on student performance in workshops/exercises in class.
3) On demand, during office hours.
4) Based on student prepared project outline
Student workload
Lectures 30 hours
Exam - writing the project paper 50 hours
Readings, Excercises, Preparation 126 hours
Further Information

This course is closely related to the Sustainable Procurement Initiative (SPI). SPI is a strategic research initiative led by a group of researchers from CBS and supported by a range of case firms participating in the initiative. By participating in this course, students will get the opportunity (not obligation) to participate in the SPI during their master thesis project work.

Expected literature


  • Ageron, B., Gunasekaran, A., & Spalanzani, A. (2012). Sustainable supply management: An empirical study. International journal of production economics140(1), 168-182.
  • Cox, A. (2015), “Sourcing Portfolio Analysis and power positioning towards a “paradigm shift” in category management and strategic sourcing”, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, 20(6), pp. 717-737
  • Foerstl, K., Meinlschmidt, J., & Busse, C. (2018). It’s a match! Choosing information processing mechanisms to address sustainability-related uncertainty in sustainable supply management. Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, 24(3), 204–217. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1016/​j.pursup.2018.02.002
  • Gelderman, C.J.; Semejin, J., (2006): “Managing the global supply base through purchasing management”, Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, 12(4). 209-217
  • Gimenez, C., & Sierra, V. (2013). Sustainable Supply Chains: Governance Mechanisms to Greening Suppliers. Journal of Business Ethics, 116(1), 189–203. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1007/​s10551-012-1458-4
  • Gimenez, C., & Tachizawa, E. M. (2012). Extending sustainability to suppliers: A systematic literature review. Supply Chain Management, 17(5), 531–543. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1108/​13598541211258591
  • Giunipero, L. C., Bittner, S., Shanks, I., & Cho, M. H. (2019). Analyzing the sourcing literature: Over two decades of research. Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, 25(5). https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1016/​j.pursup.2018.11.001
  • Giunipero, L. C., Hooker, R. E., & Denslow, D. (2012). Purchasing and supply management sustainability: Drivers and barriers. Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, 18(4), 258–269. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1016/​j.pursup.2012.06.003
  • Goebel, P., Reuter, C., Pibernik, R., Sichtmann, C., & Bals, L. (2018). Purchasing managers’ willingness to pay for attributes that constitute sustainability. Journal of Operations Management, 62, 44–58. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1016/​j.jom.2018.08.002
  • Hofmann, E.; Maucher, D.; Kotula, M.; Kreienbrink, O. (2014): Performance measurement and incentive systems in purchasing. More than just savings. Heidelberg: Springer.
  • Kraljic, P. (1983), “Purchasing Must Become Sourcing Management”, Harvard Business Review, September, 61(5), pp. 109–17
  • León Bravo, V., Jaramillo Villacrés, M., & Silva, M. E. (2021). Analysing competing logics towards sustainable supplier management. Supply Chain Management. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1108/​SCM-07-2020-0354
  • Mena, C.; van Hoek, R. I.; Christopher, M. (Eds.) (2014): Leading procurement strategy. Driving value through the supply chain. London, Philadelphia: Kogan Page. Chapter 1.
  • Monczka, R. M.; Trent, R. J.; Petersen, K.J. (2006): “Effective Global Sourcing and Supply for Superior Results” CAPS Research
  • Pagell, M., Wu, Z., & Wasserman, M. E. (2010). Thinking differently about purchasing portfolios: an assessment of sustainable sourcing. Journal of Supply Chain Management, 46(1), 57–73. https:/​/​doi.org/​https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1111/​j.1745-493X.2009.03186.x
  • Peireira, C. R., Christopher, M. and Da Silva, A. (2014), “Achieving supply chain resilience: the role of procurement”, Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, Vol. 19(5/6), pp. 626-64
  • Schiele, H.; Philipp Horn, P; Bart V. (2011): “Estimating cost-saving potential from international sourcing and other sourcing levers; Relative importance and trade-offs", International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, Vol.41(3), pp. 315-336
  • Schneider, L., & Wallenburg, C. M. (2012). Implementing sustainable sourcing-Does purchasing need to change? Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management, 18(4), 243–257. https:/​/​doi.org/​10.1016/​j.pursup.2012.03.002
  • Trent, R. J., and L. R. Roberts. 2010. Managing global supply and risk: Best practices, concepts, and strategies. Fort Lauderdale, Fla. J. Ross Pub. Chapter 4.
  • Walker, H., Miemczyk, J., Johnsen, T., & Spencer, R. (2012). Sustainable procurement: Past, present and future. Journal of purchasing and supply management18(4), 201-206.
  • Wilhelm, M., Blome, C., Wieck, E., & Xiao, C. Y. (2016). Implementing sustainability in multi-tier supply chains: Strategies and contingencies in managing sub-suppliers. International Journal of Production Economics182, 196-21.
  • Xiao, C., Wilhelm, M., Van der Vaart, T., & Van Donk, D.P. (2019). Inside the Buying Firm: Exploring Responses to Paradoxical Tensions in Sustainable Supply Chain Management, Journal of Supply Chain Management, 55(1), 3-20.
Last updated on 13-02-2024