Week 1: Introduction
“Introduction … Completion Checklist 1”
- Week 1 > Introduction > Part 1 | What Are Services?
- Week 1 > Introduction > Part 2 | Social Issues
- Week 1 > Introduction > Part 3 | An Example: Sushi
- Week 1 > Introduction > Part 4 | Course Organization
Week 1 > Introduction > Part 1 | What Are Services?
- In particular, I emphasize the cultural aspects of services.
- To understand services, we need to understand the culture.
- In this course, I will walk you through such cultural aspects of services.
- Before starting that discussion, let’s review what services are in the first place.
- You may think that services are only about shops, restaurants, etc.
- To convince you, we can see how pervasive and important services are in our society.
- Are also trying to transform themselves into service business.
- Let’s delve into the first notion of the service sector.
- Service is defined as “The non-material equivalent of a good.” We will come back to this definition later.
- Ownership is not changed during service transactions.
- I sorted the table by the ratio of service sector in GDP. France has the highest ratio of service sector at close to 80%. The second, the United States is very similar.
- Japan is about 71%. The world average is 64%. We can see that the more developed the economy is, the bigger share the service sector occupies.
- This is why governments of many countries try to invest in services so that they can stay competitive.
- Other sectors, for example, agricultural and industrial sectors, also move into services.
- A manufacturing company tries to develop service businesses using their manufactured products.
- There is a notion of product-service systems, or PSS. This concept means that the products are integrated into services.
- Now, they deliver services in which their shoes are integrated.
- Are you now convinced that services are important for you? But, why do we need to research on services? Because services are categorically different from products, we need a completely new mindset.
- This is because services are about people and their relationships.
Week 1 > Introduction > Part 3 | An Example: Sushi
- In this session, we will go further and see that the contentious relationship is an inherent part of the services and not simply exceptional events.
- Before discussing sushi let’s review what services are like.
- I will soon argue that services are not that simple.
- Let’s look at a few scenes from the film, Jiro Dreams of Sushi.
- He runs a Michelin three star sushi bar called Sukiyabashi Jiro.
- In this service, there is no smile and even no reaction.
- In this context, services are about “Making customers nervous,” “No friendliness and smiles,” “Little information for customers.” There is something wrong in the existing discourses on services.
- Why? Is sushi wrong? Is sushi just exceptional? As a scholar, I could not take such an easy exit.
- In this course, you will learn why services can be organized in this manner.
- How is this service organized? We will analyze these services in detail.
- Why do people pay for this kind of service? We will discuss cultural explanations to it.
- How can we design services then? We will learn a cultural approach to service design.
Week 1 > Introduction > Part 4 | Course Organization
- We have taken a glimpse at the cultural aspects of services.
- This course puts emphasis on both empirical analysis of actual services and theoretical perspectives to explain them.
- By learning the theoretical concepts, you will be able to discern what is going on in seemingly mundane services.
- We will look at actual examples of service encounters at Italian and French restaurants.
- In the fifth week, we will examine the concept of hospitality, which is a basic concept that characterizes services.
- In the sixth week, we will discuss “Service as a struggle” thesis based on dialectical framework.
- In the seventh week, we will broaden our view and look at various kinds of services through the lens we will have discussed.
- In the last week, we will apply this understanding to service design.
- You will be observing two services in your own culture and analyze them.
- Because there are people from various cultural backgrounds, it will be interesting to discuss online how each culture conceives of services and hospitality.