Collaborative supply chain practices during severe economic downturn in the Republic of Ireland

Martin Taggart, Lauri Koskela, John Rooke

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Construction in the Republic of Ireland held a dominant position in the economy in the decade to 2007, at peak accounting for 24% of GDP. Given the scale of this contribution it is clear that leveraging even modest efficiencies in the supply chain could yield significant benefits. Recent literature in the field of construction supply chain management suggests such collaboration is far more difficult to achieve in times of austerity. Post 2007 the industry suffered a spectacular decline, a collapsing property bubble, exasperated by the world economic downturn in 2008 led to a circa 75% decline in output. A study commenced in 2011 to investigate the extent and nature of supply chain management practices in the industry and to record the impact of the prevailing austerity. A review of relevant literature showed a significant deficit of information pertaining to the Irish industry. As a consequence of this an exploratory questionnaire survey was undertaken to collect data on supply chain management attitudes and practices in the industry to inform and scope future research strands. The results indicate a high degree of understanding of supply chain concepts and strong industry support for collaborative supply chain management approaches. Respondents also have a reasonably clear grasp of the potential of collaborative approaches and the barriers that militate against its wider use. The survey results is compared to previous results from the UK, supporting the general conclusion of an increased focus on 'cost' related supply chain factors in Ireland at present. The generally supportive results of the survey towards collaborative approaches are also compared with evidence that suggests the industry is engaging in widespread opportunistic behaviours such as below cost tendering, claims and late payment that are contrary to collaborative approaches. This prompts the further conclusion that the industry is not practicing what it preaches.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAssociation of Researchers in Construction Management, ARCOM 2012
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 28th Annual Conference
EditorsSimon D. Smith
PublisherAssociation of Researchers in Construction Management
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9780955239069, 9780955239069
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2012
Externally publishedYes
Event28th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management - Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 3 Sep 20125 Sep 2012
Conference number: 28


Conference28th Annual Conference of the Association of Researchers in Construction Management
Abbreviated titleARCOM 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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