Servitization in the creative and cultural industries

Jon Sundbo*, Luis Rubalcaba, Faïz Gallouj

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Purpose: This paper aims to develop a conceptual framework for understanding the role of servitization in the creative and cultural industries (CCI). Design/methodology/approach: A conceptual model is proposed based on five elements: servitization drivers (digitalization in particular), agents, modes (based on the standardization/customization dynamics), servitization mechanisms (the authors provide a new classification) and service experiences. Findings: CCI is not considered a natural part of the service sector. They drive economic and social development and are part of the innovation ecosystem. They are confronting a set of emerging dynamics in which servitization plays a leading role. Servitization is a way to move toward value co-creation by transforming existing business models. Servitization – with digitalization facilitates the co-creation of CCI-based experiences for customers, users and other stakeholders. Research limitations/implications: In terms of further research implications, these theoretical and managerial considerations call for empirical research of the servitization of CCI to investigate how and how much it develops. Practical implications: CCI companies need new business models that combine servitization, digitalization and value co-creation in the right mix. “One size fits all” does not work. Business models have to consider the right mix. Originality/value: The proposed conceptual model provides a novel understanding of servitization and CCI and changes the focus from the “production” or push side (e.g. artistic creativity and messages) that has characterized much CCI theory toward the demand or pull side and buyers’ (users) increased power.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Quality and Service Sciences
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)65-85
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - 2 Feb 2022


  • Culture
  • Digital transformation
  • Experience
  • Servitization
  • Value co-creation

Cite this