Framing transformation dynamics towards service-orientation: Alternative trajectories of B2B relations

Inka Lappalainen, Tiina Valjakka, Toni Ahonen, Maaria Nuutinen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    This article examines dynamics of complex transformation in value creation logics in business-to-business (B2B) relationships. Based on the literature of servitisation, relationship marketing, and particularly the service-dominant (S-D) logic approach, an integrative conceptual framework for structuring provider-customer interaction is built. The framework combines strategic and operational aspects and the perspectives of both parties. It is applied empirically in a multiple case study covering different industries. The results reveal the alternative and parallel trajectories in the B2B relations of the companies, instead of the previous unidirectional transition approach of servitisation. Furthermore, relating to the topical S-D logic debate, the results indicate that the transformation from goods-dominant logic towards service-dominant logic has been built in as different trajectories. The conceptual framework explicates transformation dynamics in terms of value creation logic and mutual dependence between parties. It facilitates particularly SMEs considering relationship-specific evaluation and development, as well as strategic re-positioning and value constellations.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)131-157
    JournalInternational Journal of Services and Operations Management
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2019
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    The research has been funded by TEKES (Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation) and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd.


    • Provider-customer relationship
    • Service strategy
    • Service-dominant logic
    • Servitisation
    • SME
    • Value co-creation


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