In this inaugural edition, the MIT CTL and CSCMP of teamed up to explore how sustainability practices are being implemented in global supply chains and what that means for companies and professionals in the State of Supply Chain Sustainability 2020 .
The research approach has three pillars: an anonymous survey of supply chain professionals, cross-industry executive interviews, and a systematic review of media coverage and corporate social responsibility reports. We believe that this approach will underpin a report that meets demands for information on supply chain sustainability that are not being met by current past research in this area.
With a sample of over 1,100 Supply Chain professionals we gleaned key insights that will enable informed decision-making for players across industries and supply chain roles. These insights included: the presence and makeup of publicly stated goals, the depth of investment across issues area, key practices in place to manage sustainability, and what sustainability means for the supply chain professional. This report concludes with how COVID-19 is influencing supply chain sustainability, and what that might mean for the future.
- The pressure to drive supply chain sustainability is diffuse across many sources, and contrary to accepted wisdom, it is being exerted by a diversity of stakeholders—not just campaigners like non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
- There are clear differences across industries in commitment, investment, and approach, but common threads exist with what goals organizations are setting and how they are attempting to reach those goals.
- The role of the supply chain professional in sustainability is clear. For many, professionals and executives alike see sustainability more commonly as a part of supply chain duties.
- With front-line laborers taking a brunt of the pressure for supply chain management during COVID-19, a poll in April 2020 showed that managers and executives alike see social sustainability as top of mind as we head into 2021.
COVID-19 is a litmus test for company adoption of supply chain sustainability.