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A Theoretical Framework for Studying Service Design Practices: First steps to a mature field

Date Published: 04 September 2014


Drawing on literature from three main perspectives on service, design and innovation – Perspectives on Service Innovation (Service Innovation and New Service Development studies), Perspectives on Service (Service Science and Service Research frameworks on services), and Perspectives on Design (Design Anthropology) – this paper presents a theoretical framework, to systematically study, position and interpret Service Design practices and outcomes. The research is the first-phase of an on-going 6-months Art and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funded scoping study into the contribution of Design for Service Innovation and Development. The creation of the theoretical framework, drawn from a literature review is a first step to a Service Design priori knowledge, to conduct and produce six case studies from the public, commercial and digital sectors. This paper will present the initial formulation of the theoretical framework as part of the case study methodology to guide the on-going data collection and analysis of the six Service Design projects; leading to and supporting the survey study of Service Design innovation practices from a wider sample of design studios and designers working in the UK and internationally.

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