New Economic and Socio-Economic Approaches
Edited by Jean Gadrey and Faïz Gallouj
Chapter 8: Service Innovation: Towards a Tertiarization of Innovation Studies
8. Services innovation: towards a tertiarization of innovation studies Ian Miles INTRODUCTION This chapter examines the current state of play in the study of services innovation. This field of study, after a long period of neglect, has attracted the attention of a large number of serious scholars in recent years. However, their work remains fragmented and disciplinary and national ‘flavours’ of study are still striking. The growing volume of work demonstrates clearly, first, that services do innovate, both technologically and organizationally. There are (naturally) substantial differences in innovation propensity and style across different classes of service firm and sector, and indicators of R&D and (technological) innovative effort do suggest that on average service firms are rather less active than comparable manufacturers. But to characterize all services as ‘supplier-driven’ is inappropriate: many are extremely proactive. Much of the analysis from services researchers has stressed the specificities of services – though equally there is much attention to the heterogeneity of service firms and industries. Despite the variety of services, services innovation does appear to frequently display features that suggest that our understandings and indicators of innovation, being manufacturing-centred, are missing significant phenomena and processes. However, this does not mean that a sharp demarcation thus needs to be drawn between services and manufacturing innovation. The ‘tertiarization’ of innovation studies referred to in the title stems from the view that services innovation has great implications for studying innovation right across the economy. This has several elements: one is that many of the ‘service’ activities...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.