Measuring the effects of sustainability oriented service innovation on firm performance

  • Muhammad Sayem

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    Due to the sustained growth of the service sector in the world’s major economies, service innovation is now one of the most visible subjects of research on business. It has garnered growing attention from researchers and practitioners. Many research documents link service innovation to successful firm performance. Historically, research on service innovation has focused predominantly on profit maximisation with comparatively less attention paid to values-based service innovation. Studies document the link between service innovation and firm performance; however, not much is known about the relationship between sustainability orientation through service innovation with firm performance. Previous studies have conceptualised sustainability orientation, yet they lack precise theorisation that has an integrative framework. For this reason the study seeks to mitigate this research gap and to conceptualise sustainability orientation through service innovation. Using a triangulation methodology this study analysed and conceptualised sustainability orientation in the service sector and measured its relationship with firm performance. The specific methods applied were meta-analysis and an inductive content analysis approach. The meta-analysis was designed to determine the Pearson’s Correlation coefficient (r =) between sustainability oriented service innovation and firm performance. The content analysis was useful in conceptualising and constructing the conceptual framework following some research propositions. The correlation coefficient denotes a significant and positive link between sustainability orientated service innovation and business performance. A number of insightful and pertinent theories and concepts – such as service dominant logic, triple-bottom line concept and the stakeholder perspective are discussed and these theories underpin the theoretical basis of this study. The study contributes to the body of knowledge through outlining clear research directions and by integrating relatively unexplored area of service innovation and the emerging notion of sustainability orientation. One of the unique contributions of this study is that by analysing previous analyses and relevant outcomes, it has developed and proposed a conceptual framework followed by some research propositions. It also outlined some academic and practical implications for researchers and business managers. The study had some obvious limitations as well. Due to the paucity of empirical work in sustainability oriented service innovation, studies were selected from two bodies of literature and linked together to make inferences. Furthermore it is based on a limited number of studies from selected databases. However, as an early step in the specific research paradigm, the contributions of this study could be considered novel and indicative for future research in this field.
    Date of Award2014
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorAbu Saleh (Supervisor) & Ali Quazi (Supervisor)

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