Sustainability in Procurement Organizations: Potentials to foster sustainability in centralized versus decentralized procurement organizations

Jakob Kompatscher

Research output: ThesisMaster's Thesis


The importance of a sustainable supply chain is being driven by upcoming human rights and environmental regulations, but there is also a clear trend among investors and financial institutions to invest only in sustainable companies in the future. To bring sustainability into the supply chain, procurement involvement is essential. Especially for company groups many problems arise while trying to implement sustainable behavior into procurement. The aim of this thesis was to investigate sustainability potentials of centralized compared to decentralized organizational procurement structures. An exploratory research was performed to build up a theoretical base for a more detailed systematic literature research which had the aim to find sustainability potentials within the reorganization of a procurement structure. To sum up the findings, a recommendation model of an organizational procurement structure for company groups, which serves as a foundation for establishing sustainable procurement practices, was developed and discussed in a practical context as a case study. Main findings are the identification of advantages and disadvantages of centralized and decentralized procurement structures, and findings on factors which influence sustainability in procurement. This acquired knowledge was combined and discussed, to generate an understanding of which factors are supported by a higher degree of centralization or decentralization. A limitation of the thesis was the disillusioning situation that not many potentials could be found through the systematic literature research. Therefore, it was not possible to clarify whether a causality between the organizational procurement structure and the potentials for sustainable procurement factual exists. The developed organizational procurement structure should serve future research as a foundation. More contribution in practical analysis could bring more clarity in this field of research and company groups will gather a basis for the establishment of structures which support the development of sustainable procurement practices.
Translated title of the contributionNachhaltigkeit in Einkaufsorganisationen: Potenziale zur Förderung der Nachhaltigkeit in zentralisierten versus dezentraler Beschaffungsorganisationen
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Montanuniversität
  • Miklautsch, Philipp, Co-Supervisor (internal)
  • Woschank, Manuel, Supervisor (internal)
Award date21 Oct 2022
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

embargoed until 05-10-2027


  • procurement
  • purchasing
  • group purchasing
  • organizational structure
  • sustainability

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