The Purchasing-Logistics Interface: A "Scope of Responsibility" Taxonomy

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To date, integration research has paid little attention to defining and exploring the interface between purchasing and logistics. This research seeks to catalog the set of joint activities that define this interface, and to analyze the way in which this interface is structured, in terms of how companies assign collective responsibility across the activity set. A cluster analysis of a set of 15 boundary-spanning activities reveals a preliminary taxonomy of three purchasing-logistics interface structures: (a) Purchasing-Dominant; (b) Segregated; and (c) Logistics-Dominant. The analysis also reveals limited evidence that the choice of purchasing-logistic interface structure has an influence on supply base performance. In addition, the choice of purchasing-logistics interface structure appears to be influenced by firm size.