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Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Designing a Service Science Discipline with Discipline

This article has been published in the IBM Systems Journal special
issue on "Service Science, Management, and Engineering" (Volume 47/
Number 1, 2008). The paper "relates our experiences at the University
of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), designing a service science
discipline. We wanted to design a discipline of service science in
a principled and theoretically motivated way. We began our work by
asking, 'What questions would a service science have to answer?' and
from that we developed a new framework for understanding service
science. This framework can be visualized as a matrix whose rows are
stages in a service life cycle and whose columns are disciplines that
can provide answers to the questions that span the life cycle. This
matrix systematically organizes the issues and challenges of service
science and enables us to compare our model of a service science
discipline with other definitions and curricula. This analysis
identified gaps, overlaps, and opportunities that shaped the design
of our curriculum and in particular a new survey course that serves
as the cornerstone of service science education at UC Berkeley... In
contrast to service operations, the service-oriented architecture
(SOA) perspective that underlies the design and deployment of Web-based
services views the service life cycle in a nearly opposite way. SOA
methodologies emphasize service design because precise, modular,
specification-of-service interfaces and outputs are essential for
reuse and interoperability. Instead of the highly variable experience
of person-to-person services, service delivery in an SOA context is
efficient and scalable. Service quality is objectively measured and
often governed by service-level agreements that emphasize activities
and measurements of the service provider. Our evaluation of the
service life cycle from different perspectives forced us to confront
the semantic challenge of harmonizing the conceptual and linguistic
categories of different disciplines so that we could frame questions
in ways that all of us could accept and understand..." [Note: Bob
Glushko (Center for Document Engineering, UC Berkeley ) is a member
of the OASIS Board of Directors.]

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