2010/03 Service Systems in Changing Paradigms: An Inquiry through the Systems Sciences


David Ing


For professionals at the beginning of the 21st century, much of the conventional wisdom on business management and engineering is founded in the 20th century industrial / manufacturing paradigm. In developed economies, however, the service sector now dominates the manufacturing sector, just as manufacturing prevailed over the agricultural sector after the industrial revolution.

This chapter proposes the development of a body of knowledge on services sys-tems, based on foundations in the systems sciences. The approach includes the design of the systems of inquiry, acknowledging that body of knowledge on 21st century service systems is relatively nascent. A program of action science is pro-posed, with an emphasis on multiple realities and knowledge development through dialectic. The outcome pursued is an increased number of T-shaped people with depth and breadth in service systems, in communities of inquiry of researchers and practitioners.

Keywords: service systems, service science, inquiring system, action science, paradigms


David Ing, "Service Systems in Changing Paradigms: An Inquiry through the Systems Sciences ", in The Science of Service Systems, (Haluk Demirkan, James C. Spohrer and Vikas Krishna, editors), in the Service Science: Research and Innovations (SRII) in the Service Economy book series, Springer 2011.