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Learning difficulties: collaborative inter-organisational information system use within UK retail supply networks

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  • Social Sciences


Inter-organisational information systems (IOIS) have been introduced to support collaborative retail supply relationships, yet how these systems are used is not well understood. This paper presents analysis of an ideographic case study of a dynamic United Kingdom grocery sector supply network. Using Archer's (1995) social change theory we explore how changes to buyer-supplier relationship structures re-conditioned individual actors' situational logics in a way that created network learning difficulties. Our analysis shows how actors' inter-organisational information system use reinforced pre-existing bargaining positions and improved already powerful actors' relative negotiating strength. This paper demonstrates the value of multi-level analysis in furthering understanding of the complex relationships between processes of network and individual learning.

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