Servitization 2017

Servitization 2017: 6h International Conference on Business Servitization (ICBS 2017)

November 16-17, 2017

Barcelona School of Building Construction (EPSEB) Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain

Book of Abstracts – Printed Edition: Lulu

Digital Edition (Open Access): pdf

Servitization of the regions

Conference Chairs: PhD Esteban Lafuente (UPC) and PhD Ivanka Visnjic (ESADE Business School)
Director scientific committee: PhD Ferran Vendrell-Herrero (University of Birmingham)

The competitiveness of manufacturing businesses increasingly relies on their ability to introduce value-adding services into their operations, and to offer integrated packages of goods and services; a process described in the literature as the servitization of manufacturing or product-service systems. There is a growing number of manufacturing firms adding services to their offer, with recent evidence indicating that the proportion reaches up to two thirds of manufacturers in developed economies. 

However, the integration of services in-house has considerable risks and therefore manufacturers, especially SMEs, have an increased demand for externalizing knowledge-based services. Knowledge intensive business service (KIBS) firms inject advanced services—i.e., servitization—across new and incumbent manufacturing businesses. Local KIBS are both sources and carriers of knowledge that might impact the competitiveness of local manufacturing firms. The colocation of product and service firms in the same space enhance territorial and urban performance by providing high value-adding services to other organizations, and fuelling job creation. 

At the territorial level, the renaissance of local manufacturing sectors, including traditional manufacturing sectors and new approaches to production such as the Makers movement and 3D manufacturing, seems to be related to growth in KIBS sector. Knowledge-intensive service ventures tend to agglomerate together with new and incumbent manufactures, developing linkages and strategic alliances, and therefore opening a virtuous entrepreneurial circle, which in turn positively influence the renaissance of manufacturing. As such servitization and the benefits of knowledge-intensive service provision do not necessarily have to be fully integrated within the manufacturer’s internal value chain. There are benefits to ‘Territorial Servitization’. 

This edition of the International Conference on Business Servitization (ICBS) aims at studying what drivers, processes and actors play a crucial role in enabling and promoting manufacturing renaissance, technological upgrading and product-service innovation in regions. The servitization of regions offers an opportunity for local manufacturing economies to resume growth and sustain long-term competitiveness. As such, the renaissance of manufacturing through territorial servitization not only facilitates the upgrading of existing manufacturing competences, but it also offers an opportunity to develop and anchor new technological capabilities across regions. 

ICBS is a conference traditionally targeted to business professionals, policy makers and researchers. While the emphasis on the conference this year will be focused on territorial servitization, as previous editions, the organizers also welcome works related to other relevant issues implicitly or explicitly linked with servitization such as business engineering, strategy, business models, international business, operations management and supply chain management. The conference will inherit the current research of international academic community on the emerging field of servitization, which focuses both on theoretical developments and on practical applications of the methods and techniques. Through this conference, participants will share the latest research findings and practical experiences and exchange their innovative ideas.  


Special sessions on specific topics are also encouraged. Topics of interest mainly include, but not limit to:
  • Territorial Servitization 
    • Economic assessment of the impact of product-service innovation on firm and territorial competitiveness 
    • What are the antecedents, moderators/mediators, and outcomes of knowledge intensive service-manufacturing collaborations on organizational resilience and performance? 
    • Conceptualization and provision of evidence on new approaches to cluster and industrial district policies formed by multi-sector, including manufacturing and service, firms. 
    • Do KIBS firms offer opportunities for local manufacturing SMEs to outsource service provision? And for multinationals to reshoring their production to the home country? 
  • Supply chain management and marketing 
    • Servitization and supply chain management 
    • Internet of things and linking channels 
    • Product-service innovation processes and organizational performance indicators 
    • Servitization and Customer Relationship Management and customer value perception 
  • Business models and strategy 
    • Partnerships, M&As and servitization 
    • Advanced business services and practices in business model innovation 
    • The internationalization of product-service offering 
    • Resilience, agility and other firm capabilities 
  • Business engineering 
    • Industry 4.0 
    • Internet of things 
    • Service system and Service network design 
    • Tools and toolkits for engineering servitization processes
    • Big data and machine learning 

Special issues

Some specials issues are linked to this conference
  • Regional Studies. Regional Studies Association
  • Practices and tools in Servitization (Book)
  • International Marketing Review
  • Sustainability
  • Strategic Change: Briefings in entrepreneurial finance

Conference chairs

  • PhD Esteban Lafuente (UPC) 
  • PhD Ivanka Visnjic (ESADE Business School)

Director scientific committee

  • PhD Ferran Vendrell-Herrero (University of Birmingham)

Scientific committee

  • Prof. Yancy Vaillant (Toulouse Business School) 
  • Prof. Glenn Parry (University of the West of England) 
  • Prof. Lisa de Propris (University of Birmingham) 
  • Prof. Andy Neely (University of Cambridge)
  • Prof. Tim Baines (Aston University) 
  • Prof. Marko Kohtamäki (University of Vaasa) 
  • PhD Oscar F. Bustinza (University of Granada) 
  • PhD Shlomo Tarba (University of Birmingham) 
  • PhD Rodrigo Rabetino (University of Vaasa) 
  • PhD Chris Raddats (University of Liverpool) 
  • PhD Mª Luz Martín Peña (Rey Juan Carlos University) 
  • PhD Emanuel Gomes (University of Birmingham and Nova University) 
  • PhD Esperanza Marcos (Rey Juan Carlos University) 
  • PhD Jesus Abad (Polytechnic University of Catalonia – Barcelona Tech) 

Organization committee

  • PhD Vasileios Myrthianos (Polytechnic University of Catalonia – Barcelona Tech) 
  • Miss Krisztina Horváth (University of Pécs) 
  • Mr Marin Jovanovic (KTH Royal Institute of Technology Polytechnic University of Madrid) 
  • PhD Francisco J. Sanchez-Montesinos (Complutense University of Madrid)

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