This systematic literature review focuses on theory-driven research in logistics and supply chain management (LSCM), giving particular attention to the originating disciplines of theories used. It is important to understand the origin of theory and how it has evolved within the LSCM discipline, because learning the past helps scholars understand the present and presage the future. To fulfill that objective, this research catalogs theories that have been used and also begins to identify how, when, and why borrowed theories have been adapted for LSCM research. The major results include theoretical insights such as trends in theory utilization and the methods and topics where theories are typically used or underused. The top five theories that have been used in LSCM research actually represent five different disciplines—management, economics, mathematics, psychology, and sociology—supporting the multidisciplinary nature of LSCM. To summarize this research, a forward-looking perspective is taken to identify potential areas for the application of theory for future LSCM research. Comments are also provided on how researchers are employing more theory in the latest period of LSCM development (2011–2015).


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pp. 299-356
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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