Innovation and Culture in Public Services

Innovation and Culture in Public Services

The Case of Independent Living

Services, Economy and Innovation series

Steven DeMello and Peder Inge Furseth

There is a growing trend toward the integration of public and private entities in the delivery of public services. This book aims to improve the ability to innovate successfully in large-scale public/private endeavors. The authors develop an underpinning theory of innovation, and extend it to address key issues in public/private collaboration. As an example, they explore the subject of independent living for seniors and disabled people across four countries – the US, UK, Norway and Japan. The resulting model provides a vehicle for all major stakeholders to better understand the dynamics of innovation, which will in turn offer the opportunity to improve performance and successful adoption.

Chapter 5: The core model: the Service Innovation Triangle

Steven DeMello and Peder Inge Furseth

Subjects: business and management, organisational innovation, economics and finance, services, innovation and technology, organisational innovation, technology and ict, politics and public policy, public policy, social policy and sociology, ageing, health policy and economics


The Service Innovation Triangle (SIT) model is the result of research by Furseth and Cuthbertson (2016) that addresses the complexity of service innovation without seeking to detail such complexity in every case. The SIT model allows for analysis, as well as exploring the rich variety of potential explanations for success or failure. While the Service Innovation Triangle was originally developed with a basis in commercial firms, the underlying philosophy and attributes are universal, as explained in the following sections. With some minor changes to the terminology, the underlying structure remains. The Service Innovation Triangle has been developed through extensive literature reviews and feedback from both practitioners and academics. This has been further validated through structured interviews with a selection of some of the best-known thinkers and practitioners in the field of innovation, as well as 12 detailed case study analyses. This provides a simple generic framework that is applicable to a wide variety of contexts and scenarios. While the model consists of only nine main elements in three layers surrounded by three main stakeholders, the resulting interrelationships provide a rich complexity able to simulate any service situation.

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