Exploring Business Interaction in Service Networks

Roberta Sebastiani, Daniela Corsaro, Francesca Montagnini

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Interaction is becoming more and more a central concept in service research, both in business to consumer and in business to business. Scholars recognize interaction as the key process for transferring value between customers and suppliers, and also in the broader network in which they are embedded. However, notwithstanding the numerous attempts to define and describe interaction in service research, a clear modeling of what interaction is, especially in service networks, lacks. This paper is aimed to understand how interaction between actors occurs in service networks and which are the main implications deriving from it. The study integrates insights from the service-centered logic of marketing with the interaction model developed in the industrial network framework (Ford et al., 2008; Hakänsson et al. 2009). Empirically, it analyzes in depth the service network of Accor Services, a leading global company expert in delivering end-to-end solutions for rewards, compensations, incentives and loyalty programs to employers and citizens; many interviews have been carried out with the main actors of the network. Results of our study shows on one side that a further understanding of interaction processes in service networks can be obtained by applying the interaction model to these contexts; on the other side this model can be better characterized when looking at service network contexts. In doing this, our study both contributes to the debate on service networks and develops the idea of interaction as in the industrial network approach.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 26th Annual IMP Conference
Number of pages35
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventThe 26th IMP Conference. Business networks - Globality, Regionality, Locality - Budapest
Duration: 2 Sept 20104 Sept 2010


ConferenceThe 26th IMP Conference. Business networks - Globality, Regionality, Locality


  • Business to business
  • Network
  • Services


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