Development of service innovation capabilities in knowledge-intensive organisations: evidence from business consultancies and Research & Technology Organisations

  • Lidia Gryszkiewicz

Student thesis: Doc typesDocteur en Sciences économiques et de gestion


The aim of this manuscript is to present the results of the doctoral research project titled “Development of service innovation capabilities in knowledge-intensive organizations”. The rationale for carrying out the project was the disproportionately limited insight academics currently have into how knowledge intensive organisations develop and dynamise their service innovation capabilities, compared to the already very high and constantly growing importance of knowledge-intensive services in the developed economies. In order to explore this relatively under-investigated field, we have carried out six case studies in two groups of knowledge-intensive organisations – business consultancies and Research and Technology Organisations. Our work lays foundations for better understanding of the key service innovation capabilities building blocks, as well as related practices used by successful organisations. We also propose a set of concrete organisational capabilities identified as important for service innovation, namely (1) committing to service innovation, (2) spotting trends in the market, (3) partnering for service innovation, (4) dialoguing with (potential) clients, (5) inventing new service solutions (6) focusing organisational service innovation efforts, (7) locating required expertise, (8) integrating different skills and perspectives, (9) cultivating new service growth, (10) demonstrating new service value (11) leveraging organisational service experience and (12) de-contextualising developed services for future re-use. Finally, in an attempt to illustrate how organisations ensure the dynamisation of these capabilities in a continuous fashion in practice, we propose the following as drivers: (a) constant ‘flow’ or movement in the organisation, (b) continuous improvement philosophy, (c) regular ‘change of scenery’, (d) ‘pause and reflect’ time, (e) no-blame culture, (f) trust and openness, (g) open invitation of criticism and ideas, (h) outside-in perspective, (I) diversity, (j) empowerment, (k) simplification and (l) feedback follow up management. Based on our findings, we propose several discussion points relating to both service innovation and to the more general topic of capabilities dynamisation, raising some important questions about the currently dominant models of these aspects in management literature. Taking into account both the novel contributions of our work and its inherent limitations, we have sketched a roadmap for future research on service innovation capabilities development and dynamisation.
la date de réponse9 déc. 2013
langue originaleFrançais
L'institution diplômante
  • Universite de Namur
SuperviseurAnnick CASTIAUX (Promoteur), Pierre-Jean BARLATIER (Jury), Allard Van Riel (Jury), Philippe Chevalier (Président) & Laurent TASKIN (Jury)

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