Value Chain vs. Supply Chain

The concept of the value chain was introduced by Michael Porter in his seminal text 'Competitive Strategy' (Porter, 1995), in which he highlights the potential for different organisations within the chain and different functions within organisations to add value and thereby deliver competitive advantage. 

However, the term 'value chain' has yet to become cemented in the vocabulary of commercial businesses and government departments. Moreover, the academic literature on value chains and value chain management is distinctly limited, with a supply chain (operations management, procurement, logistics) orientation dominating the business management journals.

In essence, the starting point on the journey to sustainable competitive advantage is the change in mindset that places the consumer first and everything else subordinate to their needs and wants. Even those agencies with a mandate to secure behaviour change and influence consumer motivation -- for the benefit of their health or the sustainability of the environment -- an understanding of their perceptions and attitudes is critical.
Whether we are trying to build loyalty for our brands or more sustainable communities and environments, changing people's behaviour begins by understanding what motivates them and to do that requires a paradigm shift in the way we view the value chain -- from supply push to demand (value) pull.
The Centre for Value Chain Research is here to assist with the journey -- in thinking, decision-making and action.

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