This list represents a summary of the past thirty years of service design literature. The citations were compiled from the Emergence conference at Carnegie Mellon University as well as the Designing for Services project in the UK, service design syllabi at CMU and individual research. I've excerpted the abstracts and introductions to the papers and cross-referenced examples and concepts so that it's easy to follow the development of ideas such as "service blueprinting" across multiple papers.

Select any underlined term to filter the list, showing only papers that share that particular concept, example, author, journal or decade. If you'd like to help fill in the gaps by suggesting other canonical papers, e-mail the citations to service at howardesign.com. Thanks!

Filter: Papers that mention "Wal-mart" | View all papers
Five Imperatives for Improving Service Quality
Sloan Management Review, 1990
Leonard Berry
From the article: "It is time for U.S. companies to raise their service aspirations significantly and for U.S. executives to declare war on mediocre service and set their sights on consistently excellent service, say the authors. This goal is within reach if managers will provide the necessary leadership, remember that the sole judge of service quality is the customer, and implement what the authors call the "five service imperatives."

Examples: Deluxe Corporation, Southwest Airlines, Sewell Village Cadillac, Palais Royal Apparel, Nordstroms, Wal-Mart, McDonalds, Century 21, Walt Disney World, Friendly Bank, PHH FleetAmerica, Aid Association for Lutherans, Preston Trucking Company, Books and Co., Florida Power & Light, British Airways, Wachovia Bank & Trust, First Bank System, American Express

Compare with:
SERVQUAL: A Multiple-Item Scale for Measuring Consumer Perceptions of Service Quality
Clueing in Customers
Cheaper, Faster, Easier: Disruption in the Service Sector
Strategy & Innovation, 2004
Clayton Christensen
From the article: "New developments in health care, higher education, and the law are just the beginning. Most people think of disruptive innovations--the simple, cheap, convenient advancements that create new growth--as tangible products. However, service-related businesses face the same circumstances that drive disruption in product-related businesses, such as the pressure to improve to serve leading customers better and the presence of "nonconsumers" who seek to do for themselves what they historically paid an expert to do. As such, service-related businesses teem with the potential for disruption."

Examples: Health Care, Education, Law, Kmart, Wal-Mart, QuickMedx, University of Phoenix, Concord Law School, eLawForum

Lean Consumption
Harvard Business Review, 2005
James Womack
From the article: "Lean production transformed manufacturing. Now it's time to apply lean thinking to the processes of consumption. By minimizing customers' time and effort and delivering exactly what they want when and where they want it, companies can reap huge benefits. "

Examples: Fujitsu Services, Grupo Fernando Simão, Grocery Stores, Shoe Stores, Nike, Tesco, Wal-mart, Costco

Compare with:
The Lean Service Machine