This list represents a summary of the past forty years of service design literature. The citations were compiled from the Emergence conference at Carnegie Mellon University as well as the Designing for Services project in the UK, service design syllabi at CMU and independent research. I've included the abstracts and introductions to the papers and cross-referenced examples and concepts so that it's easy to follow the development of ideas such as "service blueprinting" across multiple papers.

Select any underlined term to filter the list, showing only papers that share that particular concept, example, author, journal or decade. If you'd like to help fill in the gaps by suggesting other canonical papers, e-mail the citations to service at Thanks!

Filter: Papers that mention "Starbucks" | View all papers
The Barista Principle: Starbucks and the Rise of Relational Capital
Strategy + Business, 2002
Ranjay Gulati
From the article: "From coffee bar to caffeine kingdom, Starbucks proves relationships are as important as physical assets."

Example: Starbucks

Breaking the Trade-Off Between Efficiency and Service
Harvard Business Review, 2006
Frances Frei
From the article: "Service businesses struggle with a reality that is foreign to manufacturers: Customers "interfere" with their operations. To deliver consistent quality at sustainable cost, companies must learn to manage that involvement."

Examples: Grocery Store, Call Center, Emergency Room, Diner, Cleaning Service, Law Firm, College, eBay, Dell, Starbucks, Zipcar, Tiffany's, Southwest Airlines, Gateway, First Union, Netflix

The Four Things a Service Business Must Get Right
Harvard Business Review, 2008
Frances Frei
From the article: "Extensive study of the world's best service companies reveals the principles on which they're built."

Examples: Walmart, Starbucks, Commerce Bank, Progressive, Intuit, Airlines, Nestlé, Zipcar, Cleveland Clinic, Shouldice Hospital, Yum Brands, Omnicom, GE, Walmart, Starbucks, Commerce Bank, Progressive, Intuit, Airlines, Nestlé, Zipcar, Cleveland Clinic, Shouldice Hospital, Yum Brands, Omnicom, GE

Promoting Service Design as a Core Practice in Interaction Design
Carnegie Mellon University, 2013
Jodi Forlizzi
From the article: "With the growth of mobile and social computing, interaction designers are increasingly being asked to design services and systems intended for societal change. In this paper, we argue that current interaction design approaches, inspired by user experience and user-centered design, are insufficient to appropriately take on these new challenges. We propose, instead, that our community considers a service design framing to complement what is already being done in the field. We describe the process of service design, and give examples of service design framings in several projects. We show that a service framing offers a systemic approach that better address the complex stakeholder relationships, yields outcomes in the form of product-service systems, and focuses on how value can be co-produced between customers and stakeholders."

Examples: Starbucks, Flipboard, Etsy, Mechanical Turk, Vine, Instagram, Tiramisu, The Snackbot, Twitter, Instagram, Yelp, Shazam