Opportunismes påvirkning af relationer: En empirisk undersøgelse fra et multipelt case perspektiv

Patrick W. Bengtsson

Student thesis: Diploma thesis


Supply chain relationships are very often complex and affected by a number of determinants, comprising sociological, psychological, economic and organizational factors. Companies as well as universities are increasingly using the term SCM in order to describe the best case scenario. Trust is emphasized to be a crucial factor. Working from the theory of supply chain management and transactions cost economics, this study investigates whether supply chain relations are affected by opportunism from a number of perspectives. In order to answer the main question (i.e. whether opportunism affects relationships in a supply chain perspective), a number of research questions and hypothesis were developed. These four questions were divided into two categories – ex ante and ex post, respectively. The first two questions investigates whether the need for and importance of contractual protection and regulations were affected by the risk of opportunism. While the first two questions are concerned with how opportunism affects the relationship before the contract has been sealed, the last two questions are more concerned about how the parties actions are affected after the contract has been settled, or more precisely how it affects their willingness and interest in sharing critical information, and making complementary and relation-specific investments. Methodologically, the study followed a multiple case study approach, with data collected from three different Danish companies – Novozymes, Pandora and Alfa Laval, respectively. Qualitative data were collected through semi-structured interviews, and the analysis was based on information from the respondents. The results of the study indicate that trust is an important player when it comes to developing a strong relationship. But, all three companies give the impression that their decisions, to some point, are affected by the risk of opportunism. The contract is defined as a way to describe the process and how to collaborate, but it is also used as a safeguard in order to protect the company against opportunistic behavior.

EducationsGraduate Diploma in Supply Chain Management, (Diploma Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2012
Number of pages124