Interdisciplinary Interaction for the Early Stages of Product and Service Development

Interdisciplinary Interaction for the Early Stages of Product and Service Development

Mirja Kälviäinen
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-617-9.ch003
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Saturated markets require user value through services and mass customised differentiation instead of mere products. This increases the significance of integrated innovation in the early stages of complex value offerings. Front end development combines the multidisciplinary professional perspectives and user insight in a cost effective way. Truly interdisciplinary interaction is reached through intrinsic motivation, shared goals and understanding. Experience for structuring the multidisciplinary front end innovation comes from the INNOstudio® concept created by the D’ART Design Resource Centre in the North Karelia University of Applied Sciences. This concept is about service and methods facilitating innovation sessions. Process support for communication, exploration, problem space definition and further development is provided by moving from abstract thinking into external observables – scenarios, sketches, or models. Innovative value concepts require both divergent, generative thinking and convergent, analytical thinking. Diverse methods support generative ideation, exploring future opportunities and user relevance or analysing the problem space.
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Interdisciplinary Value Creation Process

The current understanding of innovation is holistic reaching from new business ideas to the market success and can be described as the commercially successful exploitation of ideas (Stamm 2004, 11). Innovation can be associated with an ideation process that has a value-creating outcome for the markets. Future orientation is required in a rapidly changing world predicting how the market will change through complex competition springing from any corner of the globe. As the changes offer new technologies, new processes and new approaches to living and working innovation has become a key to remain competitive. (Walton 2005, 6). New products and services draw their value from the networks they bring together including not only the product, but the whole venture. Developers will have to become proficient at aligning and managing the needs of multiple stakeholders: investors, suppliers, content-providers, distributors and others. (Hargadon 2005, 34). Complex product and service concepts need to be defined for the collaboration of these networks.

Figure 1.

Services attached to mere products change the former producers of products as providers of complex product and service concepts. Summer kitchen design with an element based solution that allows mass customised end result and possibility both for delivery and built in place service. (© 2005, Harri Tuononen. Used with permission.). The customer value creation for this offering involves the delivery and building chain collaborators as vital stakeholders.


Key Terms in this Chapter

User experience process: Perceived value experience for the user through the different stages of using the offerings.

Complex value concept: Strategic definition and management information for a complex value offering created by diverse stakeholders stating the role of these participants in the value creation.

Interdisciplinary: True integration of the understanding and achievements of a multidisciplinary group.

Front end development: Flexible and cheap early phase of the offering development where the multidisciplinary stakeholders of the complex offering should meet to create the basic concept.

Product and service concept: Holistic business solutions for a product and service combination offering extra value and desirability for the customer or end user.

Innovation: The commercially successful exploitation of new ideas creating business value.

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