Service design is a relatively new design discipline, developed mostly over the past 20 years. The new discipline has roots in service business development, service marketing, industrial design, graphic design, and especially in interaction design, usability design, and information design (Mitcham, 1994). Lately design thinking has had a great influence on service design work.
Internationally design is turning out to be more and more cross-disciplinary and at the same time design work is increasingly complex and immaterial by nature. At its best, design has now a totally different contribution to clients than before:
“Historically, design has been treated as a downstream step in the development process-the point where designers, who have played no earlier role in the substantive work of innovation, come along and put a beautiful wrapper around the idea. To be sure, this approach has stimulated market growth in many areas by making new products and technologies aesthetically attractive and therefore more desirable to consumers or by enhancing brand perception trough smart, evocative advertising and communication strategies. During the latter half of the twentieth century design became an increasingly valuable competitive asset in, for the consumer electronics, automotive, and consumer packaged goods industries. But in the most, it remained a late stage add-on (Roberts, 2000). Now, however, rather than asking designers to make an already developed idea more attractive, companies are asking them to create ideas better meet consumers' needs and desires. The former role is tactical, and results limited value creation, the latter is strategic, leads to dramatic new forms of value.”
The word design is most frequently employed to refer to the action or process of planning and making (designing something), but it is also used to describe the end result or artifact of this action (a design). The etymological root of the word design can be traced back to designare, Latin for “to mark out” or “devise.” Both marking out and devising signify an intent to create concepts that can be realized as objects; in other words, a designed object is “reified intention”. And the outcome of this intention can be a machine, a building, a product or a logo (Roberts, 2001). Thus, design finds itself used and claimed by a variety of disciplines including but not limited to architecture, engineering, automotive design, industrial design, graphic design and interior design, and new additions like experience design and service design continue ...