Identifying neo-Schumpeterian innovation in service firms: a cenceptual essay with a novel classification

M.J. Flikkema, P.G.W. Jansen, E.C. van der Sluis

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademic


The identification of innovation in service firms is problematic since there is no consensus of opinion on its conceptualization. Recent papers suggest both distinctive features of innovation in services and distinctive types of service innovation. This article reviews and evaluates these findings from a Schumpeterian perspective. The evaluation justifies conceptualizing service innovation as a specific case of service development with a reference to Schumpeter, but not as strict as proposed by Drejer (2004) [Drejer, I. (2004) Identifying Innovation in Surveys of Services: A Schumpeterian Perspective. Research Policy, 33, 551–562]. Despite the simultaneity of production and consumption in services, this article claims that the distinction between product innovation and process innovation should be preferred to other ways of classifying innovation in service firms. Finally, changes in the denomination of services are advanced as a key to the identification of development and innovation in service firms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)541-558
Number of pages18
JournalEconomics of Innovation and New Technology
Issue number7
Early online date28 Sep 2007
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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