ICT and innovation in services: Existing literature all says the same

Considering the increasingly important role of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) within innovation in services, one challenge of exploring this area is actually heterogeneity of existing literature on the topic, finds ISE-researcher Giulia Nardelli, who has published a litterature review of the complex relationship between ICT and innovation in services.

In other words, people seem to say the same about the subject, though there may be much more and different things to say. In her article, Giulia Nardelli identifies the main problem areas and spot the critical knowledge gaps, as a contribution to planning and execution of further research.

Informationsteknologi - Magnus Fröderberg - norden.org
Information and Communications Technology. Photo: Magnus Fröderberg – norden.org

A conceptual typology
In the paper, Gulia Nardelli finds that the previous studies about the relationship between ICT and innovation in services can be divided into five themes; namely 1) Management of ICT-based Technological Innovations, 2) Management of Organizational Innovation Resulting from ICT Adoption, 3) The Relationship Between ICT and Innovation in Services, 4) ICT in NSD and Innovation in Service Delivery and 5) the Relationship between ICT and Innovation in Services.

Three main aspects of the link between ICT as product and innovation in services are identified from the analysis in the paper, and an overview of the conceptual typology can be seen in the model from the paper below.

Giulia Nardelli’s analysis also finds, that “ICT as a special capital input might enhance the interactions among stakeholders and facilitate open innovation models, such as the one postulated by Chesbrough (2003).

Organizations need to invest more
Sometimes to get more, you need to invest more, and this paper points to the need of service organizations to “invest additional innovative effort and complementary capital inputs to benefit from ICT externalities and spillovers.

In relation to future research in the fields of innovation and service, the paper points to a need to consider the differentiation between ICT as product and special capital input: “this differentiation determines the character of the relationship between ICT and innovation in services and should be considered when addressing the issue.

The full paper can be purchased here. For more information on this, please contact Giulia Nardelli at nardelli@ruc.dk.