Conceptual framework development: CSR implementation in fashion supply chains

Patsy Perry*, Neil Towers

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    130 Citations (Scopus)


    Purpose - This paper seeks to identify the inhibitors and drivers of CSR implementation in fashion garment manufacturing from a supply chain management perspective.

    Design/methodology/approach - A qualitative case study approach was adopted, using purposive sampling to select seven export garment manufacturers of varying size and business model in Sri Lanka. Primary data was collected through on-site face-to-face interviews with managerial level and operational level informants within each company and through non-participant observation within factory environments. Data analysis was conducted manually.

    Findings - Adopting SCM principles supports CSR implementation in supplier facilities in global fashion garment supply chains by overcoming the negative effects of retail buying practices. It also progresses supplier CSR performance beyond that which is achievable via a coercive, compliance-based model by encouraging suppliers to be innovative and take ownership of the CSR agenda. Hence, aspects of supply chain relationship management may be more critical in progressing CSR implementation than traditional bureaucratic monitoring and auditing mechanisms.

    Practical implications - In an industry sector facing unique pressure on cost as well as lead time, fashion retailers must understand how to align CSR implementation with the unique competitive challenges of the sector. Analysing the success of CSR implementation in the Sri Lankan export garment manufacturing industry enables managers to identify barriers and supporting factors to CSR implementation in global fashion supply chains.

    Originality/value - This paper presents industry-specific data from a key global garment manufacturing country on a commercially sensitive subject. Its contribution to extant literature is the development of a CSR framework that identifies inhibitors and drivers to CSR implementation from a fashion supply chain management perspective.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)478-500
    Number of pages23
    JournalInternational Journal of Physical Distribution and Logistics Management
    Issue number5-6
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


    • Corporate social responsibility
    • Fashion
    • Supply chain management
    • Ethical sourcing
    • IMPACT
    • POWER


    Dive into the research topics of 'Conceptual framework development: CSR implementation in fashion supply chains'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this