Defective co-creation: Developing a typology of consumer dysfunction in professional services

Greer, Dominique A. (2015) Defective co-creation: Developing a typology of consumer dysfunction in professional services. European Journal of Marketing, 49(1/2), pp. 238-261.

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This study aims to explore the scope of consumers’ defective co-creation behaviour in professional service encounters. One of the founding premises of service-dominant logic (Vargo and Lusch, 2004, 2008) is that consumers co-create the value they derive from service encounters. In practice, however, dysfunctional consumer behaviour can obstruct value co-creation. Extant research has not yet investigated consumers’ defective co-creation behaviour in highly relational services, such as professional services, that are heavily reliant on co-creation.


To investigate defective co-creation in professional services, 164 critical incidents were collected from 38 health-care and financial service providers using the critical incident technique within semi-structured, in-depth interviews. Thematic coding was used to identify emergent themes and patterns of consumer behaviour.

Findings Thematic coding resulted in a comprehensive typology of consumers’ defective co-creation behaviour that both confirms the prevalence of previously identified dysfunctional behaviours (e.g. verbal abuse and physical aggression) and identifies two new forms of consumer misbehaviour: underparticipation and overparticipation. Further, these behaviours can vary, escalate and co-occur during service encounters.


Both underparticipation and overparticipation are newly identified forms of defective co-creation that need to be examined within the broader framework of service-dominant logic (SDL).

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 86738
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Professional Services, Co-creation, Critical Incident Technique, Consumer Misbehaviour, Behaviour Patterns
DOI: 10.1108/EJM-07-2012-0411
ISSN: 0309-0566
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > MARKETING (150500) > Marketing Management (incl. Strategy and Customer Relations) (150503)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Current > Schools > School of Advertising, Marketing & Public Relations
Copyright Owner: © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Deposited On: 24 Aug 2015 01:08
Last Modified: 24 Aug 2015 21:38

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