A Research Agenda for Service Innovation
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A Research Agenda for Service Innovation

Edited by Faïz Gallouj and Faridah Djellal

This book aims to take account of the major advances made in ‘Service Innovation Studies’ (SIS) and above all to provide an agenda setting out the research priorities in the field. This agenda is established by considering the issue of innovation in services in relation to a number of major contemporary challenges, including environmental issues, social inclusion, economic development, service ecosystems, smart service systems, religion, ageing, public organizations, gender, and ethical and societal issues. Bringing together internationals experts in the field of SIS, the book illustrates the strength and fertility of this research trajectory. It will be of great interest for both services and innovation scholars in economics, management science and public administration.
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Chapter 9: New perspectives in public service innovation

Annaflavia Bianchi, Giovanni Marin and Antonello Zanfei


This chapter aims to identify the building blocks of a new way of conceptualising and measuring public service innovation. It is suggested that addressing public service innovation implies that a large number of heterogeneous players and of interactions among them is to be considered, hence making it particularly hard to identify a single (or a few) ‘representative subjects’ as units of analysis. Abandoning a pure subject-based approach poses important challenges to measurement and statistics. A possible way to tackle such challenges might be that of singling out a manageable variety of public services and of innovation types, including online services. This implies reversing the usual approach: from the identification of subjects as the key unit of observation leading to classify innovative activities correspondingly; to the identification of innovative objects leading to the identification of subjects involved in the generation and diffusion of such innovative objects.

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