Handbook of Service Marketing Research
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Handbook of Service Marketing Research

Edited by Roland T. Rust and Ming-Hui Huang

The Handbook of Service Marketing Research brings together an all-star team of leading researchers in service marketing to explore many of the hottest topics in service marketing today.
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Chapter 24: Transformative service research: an emerging subfield focused on service and well-being

Amy L. Ostrom, Daniele Mathras and Laurel Anderson


Consumers spend most of their lives co-creating and being affected, at least to some degree, by service, services, and service systems. From education and healthcare, to financial services and telecommunications, service processes, employees, organizations, and service systems can and do affect consumers in myriad ways that can ultimately influence their well-being (Anderson et al. 2013a). In the more than 30 years since the emergence and significant growth of the services marketing discipline (Brown et al. 1994), service research has focused significantly on understanding the drivers of service quality perceptions, customer satisfaction, loyalty, word of mouth, service recovery, and new service adoption, as well as factors related to service employees and their impact on consumers and the firm. However, service research has focused much less on how co-creating and co-producing service and being a participant in a service system influence consumer well-being. Although service-dominant logic (for example, Vargo and Lusch 2004; Vargo et al. 2010) has focused greater attention on customer roles, co-creation, and perceptions of value and there is clear recognition of the effect that the social context can have on customers' experiences (for example, Edvardsson et al. 2011), we are lacking a systematic examination of how consumer experiences with service entities affect consumer well-being at the individual and collective level (Anderson et al. 2013a).

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