The term service appears in IS in contexts ranging from visible business activities performed for customers through invisible computerized responses to computerized requests deep within IT infrastructures. After distinguishing between rigorous definitions of service and treatment of service as an analytical lens, this paper presents a framework that distinguishes between four lenses for understanding and analyzing services and systems in the IS field. Each lens is directly applicable to many situations, and less applicable elsewhere. This paper summarizes each lens and identifies potential synergies between pairs of lenses. The synergies may help in using secondary lenses to support analyses guided by a primary lens. The range of lenses helps in understanding the range of meanings of service in IS.
Alter, Steven, "Seeking Synergies Between Four Views of Service in the IS Field" (2008). AMCIS 2008 Proceedings. 76.