Collaborative closed-loop supply chain framework for sustainable manufacturing: Evidence from the Indian packaging industry

Usha Ramanathan, Qile He*, Nachiappan Subramanian, Angappa Gunasekaran, David Sarpong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Businesses reeling from the impact of COVID are struggling to achieve sustainability, amidst many other challenges, including finance and capacity shortfalls. One of the pathways to achieving 3BL in businesses is to create closed-loop supply chains (CLSC) covering the entire lifecycle of products. CLSC have proven to be important for sustainable supply chain (SC) operations, given the shortage of materials and labour globally following the COVID-19 pandemic. While it is widely acknowledged that the success of CLSC depends on successful collaboration between SC members, factors for successful CLSC collaboration are not sufficiently understood from the literature. Employing an observation-based case study and a survey of SC members, we develop our contribution in the context of an Indian packaging company, to delineate and verify a collaborative CLSC framework. The results confirm that the success of CLSC collaboration lies in the involvement and commitment of SC members. Collaboration for forward and reverse SC operations also facilitate the involvement of SC members in CLSC collaborations. Our research suggests that SC collaborations are enhanced by explicit incentive-sharing schemes and having the same SC members for both forward and reverse SC operations.
Original languageEnglish
Article number122489
Number of pages13
JournalTechnological Forecasting and Social Change
Early online date23 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2023 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (


  • Closed-loop supply chain
  • Collaboration
  • Covid-19
  • Product returns
  • Sustainable manufacturing


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