5th International Conference on Business Servitization (ICBS 2016 - Granada)


Oscar F. Bustinza
Universidad de Granada

I would like to welcome you to the book of abstracts of the fifth International Conference on Business Servitization (ICBS16). On this edition, the conference aimed at studying what processes and actors support the renaissance of manufacturing while upgrading existing manufacturing competences and capabilities. Recent trends about a new manufacturing model, Industry 4.0, are emerging in the wake of the latest technological advancements. As such, the research collection in the pages below provide a better understanding of the factors that enable manufacturing sectors to transit to more innovation-intensive and difficult-to-imitate business models based on services.

Servitization has affected a wide range of firms, which are consciously transforming their businesses models through adding services to generate competitive advantage. Manufacturing and service industries tended in the past to be thought of two separate sectors. Recent evidence is changing this perception as manufacturers themselves had to base their competitive strategies on developing more complex products including value-added services. In the manufacturing sector, competitive strategies exclusively focused on exploiting economies of scale became unsustainable as customers are taking a critical role in value generation. Servitization is grounded on value-in-use shift paradigm and generate capabilities that are distinctive and sustainable over competitors. The servitization of manufacturing is expected to allow Western economies to resume growth and sustain long-term competitiveness. In this regard, Knowledge-Intensive Business Services (KIBS) firms are increasingly viewed as vital in maintaining or enhancing competitiveness of industrial sectors.

This is why well-known researches from different countries had attended to the fifth International Conference on Business Servitization in Granada. This conference welcomes relevant keynote speakers as Prof. Marko Kohtamäki analysing “Practices in Servitization” and Dr. Shlomo Tarba speaking about “Bringing strategic agility and ambidexterity concepts to servitization”. Moreover, Prof. Lisa De Propis has analysed the topic “Smart manufacturing and new technologies”, providing a critical view of European manufacturing sectors. In summary, the conference has studied the process of servitization with eleven separated sessions including a roundtable of southern Spanish firms debating on servitization experiences, some of them having the highest turn-over of the region.

Cover for 5th International Conference on Business Servitization (ICBS 2016 - Granada)