Supplier-supplier relationships in the buyer-supplier triad: Building theories from eight case studies

Zhaohui Wu, Thomas Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

279 Scopus citations


Many researchers have studied how the buying company manages its relationship with suppliers (i.e. buyer-supplier relationship). Extending this genre of study, researchers have recently shown interest in investigating how the buying company manages relationships between the suppliers (i.e. supplier-supplier relationship). In other words, just as the relationship with the suppliers does, the relationships between suppliers have strategic implications for the buyer. We present in this study eight cases that describe supplier-supplier relationship dynamics. Using theory building through case studies, we identify five archetypes of supplier-supplier relationships. Each type of relationship is a unique configuration of the relational characteristics. We also present working propositions that associate the antecedent conditions that lead to these archetypes and eventual performance implications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-52
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Operations Management
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2005


  • Archetypes
  • Buyer-supplier relationships
  • Case studies
  • Operations strategy
  • Supplier-supplier relationships
  • Supply chain management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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