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Public procurement as a government policy lever

Special issue call for papers from Journal of Public Procurement

Guest Editors

Prof Christine Harland, Politecnico Di Milano, Italy

[email protected]

Prof Michael Essig, Bundeswehr University Munich, Germany

[email protected]

Dr Jane Lynch, Cardiff Business School, UK

[email protected]

Dr Andrea Patrucco, Penn State University, USA

[email protected]


Introduction to the SI

Public procurement can impact on business, economy and society through its use as a policy lever to support implementation or deliver broader government policies (Harland, Telgen et al. 2007) such as stimulating innovation (Edler and Georghiou, 2007; Uyarra and Flanagan, 2010), and encouraging small-business entrepreneurship (Glas and Essig, 2018; Harland et al., 2019). Public procurement can be a mechanism for delivering social outcomes (McCrudden, 2004; Ambe and Badenhorst-Weiss, 2012; Lynch et al., 2019), sustainability (Brammer and Walker, 2011; Fernández-Viñé et al., 2013) and can play a role in encouraging social responsibility in private sector organisations (Steurer et al., 2012). Targeted public procurement can impact on employment (Erridge, 2007). In Italy public procurement has been shown to improve quality of local public services and economic development (Vecchiato and Roveda, 2014). Use of domestic suppliers in public contracts impacts national economies (Trionfetti, 2000). Used strategically, public procurement can promote competition in supply markets (Caldwell et al., 2005). We term all these policy-led public procurement.

For this special issue we encourage submission of papers that enhance knowledge of policy-led public procurement. Potential topics of interest include, but are not limited to, the role of public procurement in:


  • Sustainability and corporate social responsibility
  • Small business development
  • Innovation
  • Digital economy (e.g. smart city procurement projects)
  • Economic growth
  • Community benefits projects
  • E-health projects
  • International development and humanitarian aid policy

We encourage papers using existing theories but also welcome theory combining, elaboration and building.

Submission and deadline information

30 November 2019

Proposed publication date:

Volume 20, issue 3 (September 2020)

To submit your research, please visit:

To view the author guidelines for this journal, please visit:


Ambe, I. M. and J. A. Badenhorst-Weiss (2012). "Procurement challenges in the South African public sector." Journal of transport and supply chain management 6(1): 242-261.

Brammer, S. and H. Walker (2011). "Sustainable procurement in the public sector: an international comparative study." International Journal of Operations & Production Management 31(4): 452-476.

Caldwell, N., et al. (2005). "Promoting competitive markets: The role of public procurement." Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management 11(5-6): 242-251.

Edler, J. and L. Georghiou (2007). "Public procurement and innovation-Resurrecting the demand side." Research Policy 36(7): 949-963.

Erridge, A. (2007). "Public procurement, public value and the Northern Ireland unemployment pilot projec." Public administration 85(4): 1023-1043.

Fernández-Viñé, M. B., et al. (2013). "Assessment of the public administration tools for the improvement of the eco-efficiency of Small and Medium Sized Enterprises." Journal of Cleaner Production 47: 265-273.

Glas, A. H. and Essig, M. (2018). "Factors that influence the success of small and medium-sized suppliers in public procurement: evidence from a centralized agency in Germany" Supply Chain Management: An International Journal 23(1): 65-78.

Harland, C., et al. (2007). "Challenges facing public procurement." Public procurement: international cases and commentary: 351.

Harland, C., Telgen J., Callender G., Grimm R., Patrucco A (2019). "Implementing Government Policy in Supply Chains: An International Coproduction Study of Public Procurement." Journal of Supply Chain Management 55(2): 19.

Lynch, J., Harland, C.M., and Walker, H (2019). Leveraging social public procurement to deliver public value through community benefits clauses: an international study, in Lindgreen, A., Koenig-Lewis, N., Kitchener, M., Brewer, J. D., Moore, M. H. and Meynhardt, T. (Eds) (2019), Public Value: Deepening, Enriching, and Broadening the Theory and Practice. Abingdon, Routledge. (ISBN 978-1-138-05966-5): 122 -140.  

McCrudden, C. (2004). "Using public procurement to achieve social outcomes." Natural Resources Forum 28(4): 257-267.

Steurer, R., et al. (2012). "Public policies on CSR in Europe: Themes, instruments, and regional differences." Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management 19(4): 206-227.

Trionfetti, F. (2000). "Discriminatory public procurement and international trade." The World Economy 23(1): 57-76.

Uyarra, E. and K. Flanagan (2010). "Understanding the innovation impacts of public procurement." European Planning Studies 18(1): 123-143.

Vecchiato, R. and C. Roveda (2014). "Foresight for public procurement and regional innovation policy: The case of Lombardy." Research Policy 43(2): 438-450.