Adopting environmentally-friendly certifications: Transaction cost and capabilities perspectives within the Italian wine supply chain

Alessandro Varacca, Ettore Capri, Claudio Soregaroli, Mirta Casati, Stefanella Stranieri

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


Purpose: Environmentally-friendly certifications have increased over the past decade within food supply chains. Although a large body of literature has explored the drivers leading firms to adopt such certifications, it has not closely examined the strategic motivations associated with their adoption. This paper aims to investigate an environmentally-friendly certification, VIVA, examining its role as an alternative form of supply chain governance. The aim is to investigate the drivers affecting the adoption of VIVA and to assess managerial perceptions related to transaction-related characteristics and the firm’s internal resources and capabilities. Design/methodology/approach: This study draws upon both an extended transaction cost economics perspective, which is based on transaction risks and the resource-based view, which examines a firm’s internal resources. A survey was conducted via a structured questionnaire sent to all of the wine producers in charge of the decision regarding whether to adopt VIVA certification. A Hierarchal Bayesian Model was applied to analyse questionnaire responses. Such a model allows us to specify the probabilistic relationship between questions and latent constructs and to carry over uncertainty across modelling levels. Findings: The adoption of this environmentally-friendly certification is envisioned as a tool to curb internal risks, and thus to manage behavioural uncertainty within the supply chain. A high level of exposure to exogenous transaction risks discourages firms from adopting VIVA certification. The certification system is not perceived as a promoter of operational capabilities. Managers are more likely to implement the certification when they expect that its adoption will leverage their potential knowledge of the supply chain or prompt new and better collaborations with the suppliers. Therefore, the certification can become a resource that interacts with the capabilities of the firm, expressing complementarities that stimulate the formation of dynamic capabilities. Research limitations/implications: The identification of drivers from the two theoretical perspectives offers insights into the attributes that are perceived as important by managers and which, therefore, could be leveraged to foster the adoption of the environmental certification. The external validity of the study could be improved by extending the sample to other certifications and supply chains. Originality/value: The study offers a different perspective on environmental certification. It demonstrates that considering the certification as an alternative form of supply chain governance opens up a set of efficiency and strategic considerations that could be addressed to promote the effectiveness of an environmental strategy within a supply chain
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)1-16
Numero di pagine16
RivistaSupply Chain Management
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2021


  • Governance
  • Green supply chains
  • Resource-based view
  • Transaction cost theory


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