Service Science emerged in the mid-2000s as an academic discipline aimed at applying technology and science to the service sector, - by far the largest sector of the US economy and of most economies around the world. Since its inception, IBM has played a major role in the continuing evolution of service science, coining the term Service Science, Management and Engineering (SSME) to highlight the interdisciplinary nature of this emerging discipline. I was personally involved in these efforts during my last few years at IBM. Subsequently, it’s continued to be one of the main subjects I’ve talked about in seminars and written about in this blog.
A few weeks ago I had an interesting conversation on the the state of service science with analysts from an IT research organization who were preparing a report on the subject for their clients. Our discussion led me to reflect on the evolution of service science over the past several years. I think that we are hearing a bit less about it these days. But is that because we’ve become tired of the subject and moved on, or because the application of science and technology to services is now so well accepted that it’s no longer a topic of debate? I very much think it’s the latter.