This chapter addresses the co-production of health service innovations, specifically focusing on the roles of end-users (that is, patients) and third sector organizations within the innovation process. Third sector organizations gave multifaceted roles that include patient advocate, knowledge-intensive service (KIS) provider, independent financier for innovation and the organization of the innovation networks that produce new health services. Third sector organizations are found in a variety of sectors, and take a variety of organizational forms. Kendal and Knapp (1995) describe the not-for-profit third sector as a ‘loose and baggy monster’ that includes unincorporated and voluntary associations, trusts, charities, cooperatives, foundations and not-for-profit business enterprises and social enterprises. The chapter has two aims. First, to critically examine the co-production of new health services. Second, to identify the specific contributions of third sector organizations to the organization and management of the innovation networks that co-produce new health services. The empirical research presented in this chapter is based on a cross-cutting meta analysis of ten case studies that were developed in the European Union (EU)-funded Public–Private Innovation Networks in Services (ServPPINs) project. Co-production has received much attention from scholars researching private sector services. Co-production was first discussed by Fuchs (1996), who observed that the knowledge, experience and motivation of users have a direct impact on the productivity of the provider. Fuchs took as his examples retail, banking, education and health services.
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