In recent years, an increasing number of natural and man-made disasters has demonstrated that a working relief supply chain management (RSCM) is crucial in order to alleviate the suffering of the affected population. Coordination, cooperation and collaboration within RSCM is essential for overcoming these destructive incidents. This paper explores the research undertaken in recent years, focusing on coordination, cooperation and collaboration in the field of supply chain management (SCM) and RSCM in order to provide unique definitions of these concepts taking the disaster setting into consideration. A systematic literature review including 202 academic papers published from 1996 onwards in top journals dealing with commercial supply and relief supply chain coordination, cooperation and collaboration is applied. In order to answer the underlying research questions in a proper way, a descriptive analysis and qualitative and quantitative content analysis of the papers are conducted. Descriptive results indicate that RSCM coordination, cooperation and collaboration have increasingly shifted into the focus of scientific research since 2001/2004 (i.e., 9/11 and the Indian Ocean Tsunami). Based on the qualitative content analysis, clear definitions of the terms coordination, cooperation and collaboration in SCM and RSCM were elaborated. The research landscape, as a result of the quantitative content analysis, allowed the identification of three issues that need to be addressed in future research work.