Frugal innovation for supply chain sustainability in SMEs: multi-method research design

K. T. Shibin, Rameshwar Dubey, Angappa Gunasekaran, Zongwei Luo, Thanos Papadopoulos, David Roubaud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

99 Scopus citations


In this study, we attempt to establish the missing links between supply chain sustainability and frugal innovation. Our study motivations stem from two facets of the emerging markets: first, the institutional barriers and, second, the resource constraints. We argue that there is a synergy in the concepts of frugal innovation and sustainability in supply chains and there is a need to further explore this synergy. Furthermore, we claim that even in the wake of many success stories in the frugal innovative supply chain management practices from emerging markets such as India, there are very few, if any, attempts made to understand the implications of a sustainability oriented frugal innovations in the particular context. To address this gap, we develop a model to establish the linkage between sustainable supply chains and frugal innovations. Our proposed conceptual framework depicts the hierarchy and interlinks of the identified enablers in developing sustainability oriented frugal innovative capabilities in supply chains. Furthermore, we have empirically validated our theoretical framework using survey data. We observed that most of the interpretive links are supported. These findings extend the understanding of frugal innovation for supply chain sustainability using multi-method research design, while also providing theoretically guidance to managers in the development of frugal innovation capability to achieve sustainability in supply chain in resource constrained environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)908-927
Number of pages20
JournalProduction Planning and Control
Issue number11
StatePublished - Aug 18 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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