Commentary: transformative service research and social marketing – converging pathways to social change

Rebekah Russell-Bennett, Raymond P. Fisk, Mark S. Rosenbaum, Nadia Zainuddin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to discuss two parallel but distinct subfields of marketing that share common interests (enhancing consumers’ lives and improving well-being): social marketing and transformative service research. The authors also suggest a research agenda. Design/methodology/approach: The paper offers a conceptual approach and research agenda by comparing and contrasting the two marketing fields of transformative service research and social marketing. Findings: Specifically, this paper proposes three opportunities to propel both fields forward: 1) breaking boundaries that inhibit research progress, which includes collaboration between public, private and nonprofit sectors to improve well-being; 2) adopting more customer-oriented approaches that go beyond the organizational and individual levels; and 3) taking a non-linear approach to theory development that innovates and co-creates solutions. Originality/value: This paper presents the challenges and structural barriers for two subfields seeking to improve human well-being. This paper is the first to bring these subfields together and propose a way for them to move forward together.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)633-642
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Services Marketing
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Commentary: transformative service research and social marketing – converging pathways to social change'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this