The study was an extension of a previous research on purchasing dissertations conducted by Williams  to identify the key focus areas of research in the prior decade.In this study, Williams concluded that the key focus areas covered were supplier selection and development, information systems, organizational and measurement issues, negotiation and purchasing ethics.In this section, nine prior studies—seven American studies and two Nordic studies—are briefly mentioned so as to identify the trends in topical coverage through the years and to see whether there are any similarities between the topics chosen by Ph D students across the Atlantic.
Two earlier studies of Nordic doctoral dissertations within logistics and SCM have been disseminated in academic journals. , who reviewed 71 Nordic dissertations published between 19.
Most of the dissertations were published as monographs with manufactures and carriers as the primary entity of analysis.
Compared with previous studies, this paper identifies a trend toward: more dissertations based on a collection of articles than monographs; more dissertations focusing on inter-organizational SCM issues; a shift from a focal company perspective to functional aspects and supply chain-related research; and finally, a continued decreased focus on the philosophy of science.
A score for measuring the significance of article-based dissertations is also proposed.
With a point of departure within the dimensions and classified categories of these two above-mentioned reviews, this paper provides two analyses: Accordingly, the analyses within this paper will not only reveal several important insights, but also identify new, potential research areas within the logistics and SCM discipline.
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Based on these insights, it will be possible to coordinate future research efforts and avoid any unnecessary replication or duplication of previous work.
The most recent review covering US dissertations was conducted by Nakhata et al. In this study, the authors reviewed 609 doctoral dissertations completed between 20.
The number of identified dissertations in this study is significantly larger than the four reviews conducted by Stock and colleagues and clearly reflects a significant increase in colleges/universities graduating doctoral students within logistics- and supply chain-related areas.  also point out that a forthcoming retirement of academic “baby boomers” during the period 2005–2020 may explain the increase in the Ph D production.
Specifically, such a review will help us to understand the different approaches in relation to research framework, methodologies, theories applied and the empirical interpretations.
Furthermore, the review could not only provide valuable insights into potential research gaps within the discipline, but also pave way for recognizing interesting topics for future research .