Books for Service Designers

New: Service Design Books, a co-created library of recommended reading for service designers.

Earlier this week Marc Fonteijn from 31Volts put together a good list of service design blogs and other resources. His list prompted me to pull together some books off my shelf that make for valuable reading. Few of these titles are actually about service design, but each has something worthwhile to contribute.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. I’ve selected 15 books from my library that make sense to me and organized them roughly by my level of recommendation.

Finally, a couple books that I haven’t read yet but are on my list (among dozens and dozens, unfortunately).

Systems Thinking in the Public Sector – John Seddon
From Products to Services – Laurie Young

I’d love some help adding to the pile.

Update: Three more books; thanks Marc!

Subject to Change – Adaptive Path
10 Faces of Innovation – Tom Kelley
A Whole New Mind – Daniel Pink

And another vote for Laurie Young’s book, above, and one more to add from Nick Marsh (I’ve Americanized the link).

New Service Development – Bo Edvardsson


  1. In random order:
    – Subject to Change by the adaptive path guys
    – 10 faces of innovation by Tom Kelley
    – A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink

  2. Hi Jeff, great post. Especially agree with the Scott McCloud book. Love that guy! You’ve inspired me to post my two favourite non-design service design books that design-led service designers should read. (Lot of design in there!)

  3. Jeroen Elstgeest

    Lenghty title but the reading is a breeze:
    “The Best Service is No Service: How to Liberate Your Customers from Customer Service, Keep Them Happy, and Control Costs”

    It focuses more on the managerial side of Customer Contact Centers, but it’s definitely about Service Design.




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