Boosting service innovation: The role of consultancies

Manuela Pinto, Irina Saur-Amaral, Carlos Brito

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


This paper seeks to make a particular contribution in what are the roles of consultancies as key innovation intermediaries in service industry. Intermediation literature mostly focuses on the analyzing the contribution of intermediaries in manufacturing context and in technological innovation. More recently, the importance of intermediaries in service context and non-technological innovation has been discussed. In line with the emergent literature, the research aims to shed more light on the perceived importance of consultancies as innovation intermediaries in service industry, from the point of view of service clients. Four in-depth case studies of service companies were developed, resulting on detailed descriptions of the phenomenon using constructs to order the data and relate to earlier literature. Key findings highlight changes in motivations for consultancy engagement, from an initial focus on knowledge (output) to a focus on methodology (process). A new function of intermediaries arises from this study, related with “evaluation of innovation outcomes”. The study highlights the contribution of consultancies in preparing companies to innovate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-68
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Innovation Management
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 19 Oct 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Collaboration Process, Results
  • Consultancies
  • Innovation Intermediaries
  • Motivations
  • Service Companies


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