Servitization and Deservitization: Overview, Concepts, and Definitions

Kowalkowski, C., Gebauer, H., Kamp, B. & Parry, B. (2017), Servitization and Deservitization: Overview, Concepts, and Definitions, Industrial Marketing Management, Vol. 60.

21 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2016 Last revised: 30 Dec 2016

See all articles by Christian Kowalkowski

Christian Kowalkowski

Linköping University

Heiko Gebauer

University of St. Gallen

Bart Kamp

Louvain School of Management (UCL)

Glenn Parry

University of the West of England (UWE)

Date Written: December 28, 2016

Abstract

The topic of servitization has generated a considerable body of research and many conferences, as well as industry engagement. Yet, despite the extensive literature associated with this now-mature discipline, there is no broad-based consensus on the core concepts and definitions deployed by servitization scholars, and both terminology and usage often seem ambiguous. This paper examines challenges related to service growth strategies, as well as strategies involving deservitization or a retreat from service offers. Showing that these strategies have been pursued for more than fifty years, clarification is sought here by framing the corresponding processes and proposing definitions for four core terms: servitization, service infusion, deservitization and service dilution. It becomes clear that in focusing on the organizational change entailed by these processes, future research must elucidate “softer” issues such as leadership and business logic.

Keywords: servitization, deservitization, service infusion, service dilution, product-service system, industrial services, B2B service growth, service innovation

JEL Classification: M31, O14, L2, L6, M1

Suggested Citation

Kowalkowski, Christian and Gebauer, Heiko and Kamp, Bart and Parry, Glenn, Servitization and Deservitization: Overview, Concepts, and Definitions (December 28, 2016). Kowalkowski, C., Gebauer, H., Kamp, B. & Parry, B. (2017), Servitization and Deservitization: Overview, Concepts, and Definitions, Industrial Marketing Management, Vol. 60.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2890856

Christian Kowalkowski (Contact Author)

Linköping University ( email )

Linköping, 581 83
Sweden

HOME PAGE: http://https://liu.se/medarbetare/chrko57

Heiko Gebauer

University of St. Gallen ( email )

Varnbuelstr. 14
Saint Gallen, St. Gallen CH-9000
Switzerland

Bart Kamp

Louvain School of Management (UCL)

Belgium

Glenn Parry

University of the West of England (UWE) ( email )

Blackberry Hill Bristol
Bristol, Avon BS16 1QY
United Kingdom

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