Conference programme

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Wednesday, 18 November 2015
14:30 - 16:00 Supply chain models
Supply chain  
Onshore      Offshore    

Room: Belleville

This session investigates the theory and models of procurement and supply chain, and will provide some examples to demonstrate how to optimize wind component costs.

Learning objectives

  • Differentiate procurement and supply chain approaches
  • Understand how technical innovation can lower procurement costs
  • Understand the importance of lifetime costs
Lead Session Chair:
Kirsten Tracht, Bremen Institute for Mechanical Engineering, Germany

Thorsten Landau, GE, Germany
Federico D'Amico EDF Energy, United Kingdom
Federico DAmico (1) F
(1) EDF Energy, London, United Kingdom (2) Durham University, Durham, United Kingdom (3) devCo.Ltd, Peterborough, United Kingdom

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Presenter's biography

Biographies are supplied directly by presenters at EWEA 2015 and are published here unedited

Dr. Federico D'Amico has been working in the offshore wind industry for more than five years. He is currently a research engineer at the EDF Energy R&D UK Centre in London. During his PhD studies he developed a decision support system for assessing offshore wind port selection criteria. After his studies he was involved in a number of consultancy and research projects focusing on installation, logistics and supply chain issues related to offshore wind industry.


How Purchasing and Supply Management Practices Affect Key Success Factors


In reference to the offshore-wind industry, this study shows that innovative purchasing and supply management practices can increase not only firm- but also industry-level performance. This article also includes a description of the offshore-wind supply chain, which remains under studied in academic literature, despite increasing global development of offshore-wind farms.


The effective use of global sourcing can help companies achieve superior firm performance (Lindgreen et al., 2009; Lindgreen et al., 2013). We consider how innovative purchasing and supply management practices might increase industry-level performance too, with a focus on the offshore-wind industry. Offshore-wind offers a promising renewable form of energy, such that the industry has experienced constant growth in recent years (GWEC, 2013). In efforts to improve energy generation capabilities, firms have built more and larger turbines, a trend that has repercussions for the offshore-wind market, its technology, and the complexity of the supply chain.

Main body of abstract

With a supply chain–level analysis, we identify the innovative use of three purchasing and supply management practices—make-or-buy decisions, contract forms, and local-to-global sourcing decisions—that can address supply chain complexity. On the basis of key success factor theory (De Vasconcellos E Sá and Hambrick, 1989), we propose a conceptual framework in which innovative purchasing and supply management practices represent the strengths that firms acquire to achieve key success factors for the industry. With real-world, industrial evidence from recent offshore-wind farm projects, we identify three key success factors in the offshore-wind industry: competition, capabilities, and control.


We contribute to managerial practice by offering a clear direction to companies operating in the offshore-wind industry for innovating their purchasing and supply management practices and thereby increase performance. In terms of our academic contribution, we offer the first academic study of the offshore-wind supply chain and its underlying mechanics.
Furthermore, we confirm that purchasing and supply management practices have both firm-level and industry-level relevance. In investigating the offshore-wind industry, we reveal various opportunities for purchasing and supply management practices, as outlined by Schoenherr et al. (2011), such as identifying the dynamics that lead to global sourcing, analyzing the effect of supply management on competition, investigating effective ways to develop supplier capabilities, and identifying mitigation measures for supply chain risks.

Learning objectives
Innovative purchasing and supply management practices affect the key success factors of the industry by increasing competition, capabilities, and control.
Purchasing and supply management practices could affect industry-level performance. This article is among the first ones to provide an analysis of the offshore-wind supply chain and its evolution.