This article presents a review of published research on global purchasing in the period 1990–2005. We rely on 123 articles to discuss the fields’ conceptual foundations and methodological approaches. We synthesize findings on the central phenomenon, its antecedents and consequences as well on the globalization process of purchasing. This review learns that the conceptual foundation of this field remains premature. Global purchasing research would benefit from a significant convergence in and formalization of its conceptual basis as well as from more explanatory and less descriptive empirical work.