Innovation Research in Services IRIS


IRIS focuses on service innovation and service management research. New insights into these topics are acquired by combining different perspectives from service studies, organisation theories, and innovation theories. The majority of the group’s empirical research is conducted through qualitative case study methodology, which enables creating in-depth understanding of the topics in their empirical context. In addition, a part of the studies are conducted through design science and action research processes, which enables the development and testing of new models and tools with practical relevance.

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IRIS research group explores and compares service innovation approaches in the contexts of knowledge-intensive business services, industrial services, consumer services, and public services. The topics are studied at the level of individual service products and product portfolios as well as at the level of the organisation. The main research topics are the following:

The nature of innovations in services

Service models are studied in different organisational contexts, and the types and dimensions of innovations related to these models are analysed.

The nature of service innovation and development processes.

The group aims at identifying and developing different types of service innovation processes, as well as other development approaches in services, including productisation, new service development (NSD), and service engineering. Special emphasis is on user-driven innovation practices and foresight methods related to innovation activities.

Organisational innovation and change, cultural transformation, and new managerial practices related to service development

Currently the focus is on exploring the managerial, cultural and organisational change that is on-going in industrial organisations which aim at developing and broadening their service businesses (servitisation and kibsification of industrial firms).

Innovativeness and innovation management at an organisational level

This theme focuses on identifying different kinds of organisational arrangements and leadership methods for managing innovativeness of employees in service organisations. Current emphasis is in understanding different types of open and employee-driven innovation models.

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Current research projects

Past research projects