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Towards a shared understanding of the service experience – a hospitality stakeholder approach

Ceridwyn King (School of Sport, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA)
Enrique Murillo (Universidad Panamericana, Mexico City, Mexico)
Wei Wei (University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, USA)
Juan Madera (University of Houston, Houston, Texas, USA)
Michael J. Tews (School of Hospitality Management, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, USA)
Aviad A. Israeli (School of Hospitality Management, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio, USA)
Lu Kong (Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA)

Journal of Service Management

ISSN: 1757-5818

Article publication date: 29 May 2019

Issue publication date: 8 August 2019



The purpose of this paper is to start a conversation on achieving a shared understanding among hospitality service co-creation participants. Adopting a stakeholder and service eco-systems approach, attention is drawn to the necessity for all service experience participants to have a shared understanding of the service experience and their role within it, for a sustained competitive advantage to be realized. Informed by community of practice (CoP) thinking, a road map of research questions is advanced encouraging insight into a macro level phenomenon that, traditionally, is only ever considered at the micro service encounter level.


A thorough multidisciplinary review of the literature was undertaken, providing an opportunity to present a viewpoint on the strategic implications of providing a sustainable competitive advantage via the hospitality service experience.


To achieve a shared understanding across the Hospitality Service Experience Eco-System, potential tensions among stakeholders are highlighted. Accounting for such barriers, institutional arrangements, combining organizational CoPs that are bridged by designated boundary objects, is advanced. Given the novel approach of applying a traditionally organizational phenomenon at a macro multi-stakeholder level, several research questions are proposed to inform thinking about this neglected perspective.


Acknowledging the innovation, agility and resources required to maintain a competitive service experience, the paper emphasizes the importance of adopting a macro perspective to effective service management. The hope is to stimulate academic interest to inform understanding as to how to build this capability as well as enhance practitioner interest in promoting stakeholders’ CoP for the benefit of the entire Hospitality Service Experience Eco-System.



Erratum: It has come to the attention of the publisher that the paper, Ceridwyn King, Enrique Murillo and Wei Wei, “Towards a shared understanding of the service experience – a hospitality stakeholder approach” published in Journal of Service Management published the incorrect affiliation for Enrique Murillo. This should be Universidad Panamericana, Mexico City, Mexico and not Universidad Panamericana, Zapopan, Mexico. This error was introduced in the editorial process and has now been corrected in the online version. The publisher sincerely apologises for this error and for any inconvenience caused.


King, C., Murillo, E., Wei, W., Madera, J., Tews, M.J., Israeli, A.A. and Kong, L. (2019), "Towards a shared understanding of the service experience – a hospitality stakeholder approach", Journal of Service Management, Vol. 30 No. 3, pp. 410-428.



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