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Creating a shared narrative: the use of causal layered analysis to explore value co-creation in a novel service ecosystem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Article number5
JournalEuropean Journal of Futures Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


Purpose: The current business environments are increasingly dominated by the networked and systemic conceptualisation of value creation. However, surprisingly, little is known about the explicit and symbolic (inter)relationships between the different actors involved in the value co-creation processes—or about how they impact on the network-specific innovation capabilities. More research is needed to explore and validate the yet theoretical models and concepts of value co-creation in practice. Design/methodology/approach: Theoretically, this study is built on the ideas and concepts of Service-Dominant (S-D) logic. Empirically, the research is based on a set of thematic interviews conducted in a real-life service ecosystem, in the context of university-industry collaboration. The method of causal layered analysis (CLA) is used to both identify and develop constitutive narratives that support the service ecosystem’s long-term strategic planning and value co-creation practices. Originality/value: The use of CLA in exploring the S-D logical view on value co-creation is a unique combination. By studying a highly social, dynamic and interactive process during which different service ecosystem actors first come together to share their values and mental models, and then act upon, significant new knowledge and understanding is offered for all those interested in applying a more systemic approach on service ecosystem development. Practical implications: Given that the use of CLA not only increases the awareness of alternative narratives, but of the abilities to facilitate the desired future(s), new insight and practical advice will be provided for both managers and participants taking part in a service ecosystem.


  • Causal layered analysis, Futures literacy, Service ecosystems, Service systems, Service-dominant logic, Value co-creation

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Field of science, Statistics Finland

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