Applying Configurational Thinking to Identify Recipes for Producing Service Innovations in the Service Sector

N.A. TORUGSA*, A. ARUNDEL, P.L. ROBERTSON

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Using data from a sample of 2,528 European service firms, this study applies configurational thinking to identify combinations or "recipes" of attributes that can result in service innovation. Attributes of interest include the sector of service activities, the type of market served, the presence of production in other countries, the introduction of potentially complementary process and organisational innovations, and investment in research and development. We employ crisp-set qualitative comparative analysis (QCA) to identify recipes for service innovation, and verify the results using logit regression. By revealing several recipes for service innovation and demonstrating the value of QCA's configurational thinking in providing a nuanced picture of the heterogeneity of innovation activities at the level of individual firms, our findings provide valuable linkages to managerial actions and have the potential for revitalising theory of service innovation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1850049
Number of pages23
JournalInternational Journal of Innovation Management
Volume22
Issue number6
Early online date5 Dec 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

JEL classifications

  • o30 - "Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights: General"
  • o31 - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives

Keywords

  • causal complexity
  • Configurational thinking
  • qualitative comparative analysis
  • service firms
  • service innovation
  • PERSPECTIVE
  • INTENSIVE BUSINESS SERVICES
  • DETERMINANTS
  • RESEARCH-AND-DEVELOPMENT
  • PERFORMANCE
  • INDUSTRIES
  • PATTERNS
  • APPLYING COMPLEXITY THEORY
  • ORGANIZATIONAL INNOVATION
  • TECHNICAL CHANGE

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