Dr. Christian Grönroos is since 1999 Professor of Service and Relationship Marketing (prior to that 1984-1999 Professor of International and Industrial Marketing) at Hanken School of Economics Finland (Svenska handelshögskolan) and initator and past chair of the board of the research and knowledge centre CERS Centre for Relationship Marketing and Service Management of this business university. He is a Honorary Professor at Nankai University and Tianjin Normal University, P.R.China as well as at Oslo School of Management, Norway. Between 2002 and 2007 he served as Guest Professor of Service Management at Lund University (Campus Helsingborg), Sweden.
He is a pioneer and leading scholar developing modern service marketing and service logic as well as relationship marketing and customer relationship management, and one of the earliest proponents of the term service management to describe customer-oriented or market-oriented management based on a service logic in service and manufacturing firms. He is one of the fathers of the school of service marketing and management that internationally has been labelled The Nordic School of thought.
He is a CSL Distinguished Faculty at Center for Services Leadership, Arizona State University, USA and an International Fellow at Service Research Centre (Centrum för tjänsteforskning), University of Karlstad, Sweden. In Finland he is scholarly affiliated (docent) with Åbo Academy University, Helsinki University of Technology (now part of Aalto University) and University of Tampere. He is also a Honourary Member of the Italian Marketing Association and also a Guest Professor at Marketing Research Center of China.
He is a distinguished member of the Finnish Society of Sciences and Letters and since 2008 a member of the board of the Society.
In 2013 he received the Professor E.J. Nyström's Prize, the most distinguished award for scholarly achievements by the Finnish Society of Sciences and Letters.
Among his current academic administrative positions are member and chair of the university council as well as member of the academic council of Hanken School of Economics Finland.
Legends in Marketing
Christian Grönroos has been selected as a "Legend in Marketing" - the first one outside North America -, and his research work will be compiled and featured in the forthcoming "Legends in Marketing" Series, edited by Dr. Jagdish Sheth (Series Editor) and published by the Sage Publications. Other marketing scholars featured as Legends include Richard Bagozzi, Paul Green, Shelby Hunt, Philip Kotler, V. Kumar, Naresh Malhotra, Kent Monroe, Jagdish Sheth, Yoram Wind, and Gerald Zaltman.
The objective of the Legend series is to ensure that the most prominent marketing scholar's legacy is widely disseminated to the next generation of marketing researchers, and to preserve this body of knowledge as a legacy in the field of marketing. The research work of Dr. Grönroos will be organized into 8 volumes by topics and themes. Each volume in this series will have a volume editor who will write an introductory article, and also include commentaries by three or four scholars in marketing.
Christian Grönroos on marketing and service business logic
Click on the boxes below to view 1) videoclips covering a series of Principle of Service Management lectures 2) a videoclip about reinventing marketing through promise management, 3) a video including a lecture on how to reinvent marketing, 4) an interview about the future of marketing. and 5) eight short videoclips on service management and marketing.
Principles of Service Management
Marketing as promise management: regaining customer management for marketing
Grönroos on reinventing marketing: Is marketing nothing but a big mistake? Or can it be reinvented?
He has published extensively in several languages on service marketing and management and relationship marketing issues as well as on contemporary views on marketing theory. His most recent books on the service and relationship perspective in business are Service Management and Marketing. Customer Management in Service Competition (John Wiley & Co, 2007; 3rd edition) and In Search of a New Logic for Marketing. Foundations of Contemporary Theory (John Wiley & Co, 2007). For a complete list of publications (from 2000 onwards), see the Publications section.
Since 1986 he is a distinguished member of the Finnish Society of Sciences and Letters, and since 2008 a board member of the society.
In two separate studies about the academic and societal impact of professors in business administration in Finland in 2007 Christian Grönroos came out as the professor with the highest impact.
According to information from Emerald in 2007, his articles “From marketing mix to relationship marketing: Towards a paradigm shift in marketing” (Management Decision, lead article, 32, 2, 1994, 4-20) is the by far most downloaded ever of all articles published in any Emerald scientific journal.
His article "Adopting a service logic in manufacturing: conceptual foundation and metrics for mutual value creation" (Journal of Service Management, 21(5):564-590; together with Pekka Helle) was elected best article 2010.
His article "Service as business logic: implications for value creation and marketing (Journal of Service Management, 22(1):5-22; lead article together with Annika Ravald) was wlected best article 2011.
His article “The relationship marketing process: communication, interaction, dialogue, value” (Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, 19, 2, 2004, 99-113) has annually been the most downloaded article among all articles published in the Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, an Emerald journal, and is the overall most downloaded article published in the journal. Moreover, it is the article with the highest immediate impact, meaning the article that has most downloads during the six months after the month of publication
In a study of the academic impact of scholars who had published in the A category Journal of Business Research in 2000 one of his articles (“Relationship Approach to Marketing in Service Contexts: The Marketing and Organizational Behavior Interface”, Journal of Business Research, 20, 1, 1990, 3-11) came out as the one with the highest impact.
His article "From marketing mix to relationship marketing: towards a paradigm shift in marketing" , Management Decision, 32, 2, 1994, 4-20 (lead article; Award for Literary Excellence, 1994) is still the most downloaded article of all articles published in an Emerald journal.
In a citation index study from 1994 comparing Finnish scholars in business administration with those in sociology, political science and public law Christian Grönroos was found to the internationally by far most cited scholar in business administration and in terms of citations on the same level as the most prominent scholars in sociology and political science in Finland (the reference disciplines in the study). Quoting from the study, “In business administration Grönroos comes first, then no one, then no one, and then the rest”.
In two separate studies on the academic and societal impact of professors in business administrtion in Finland in 2009, Christian Grönroos was again found to top the list.
In 1999 he received the American Marketing Association’s Career Contributions To Services Discipline Award, as the first scholar ever from outside North America to receive this award.
In 2002 he was awarded the Pro Oeconomia Prize for best business book published in Finland.
In 2003 he was honoured with Emerald Literati Club’s Lifetime Achievement Award for contributions in the field of marketing.
In 2007 he received the JBIM Award for distinguished contribution to the business-to-business field.
In Scandinavia he has been awarded for his service management research: The Ahlsell Award for outstanding research into marketing and distribution, and the Erik Kempe Award for his textbooks on service management and marketing.
Between 1999 and 2008 he served as the chairman of the jury for the CERS Award for Excellence in Relationship Marketing and Management.
Between 2008 and 2011 he served a member of the jury of the Finnish Quality Award.
In addition to his academic career he frequently lectures on service management and marketing, and service business logic as well as customer relationship management and relationship marketing in university-level executive programmes as well as in in-house seminars in service and manufacturing firms in Europe, North America (USA), Latin America (Brazil), Asia (China and Thailand), Africa (South Africa) and Oceania (Australia and New Zealand).