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The Score is not the Music: Practices and Value in Collaborative Consumption Contexts

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Part of the Developments in Marketing Science: Proceedings of the Academy of Marketing Science book series (DMSPAMS)


Traditionally, marketing scholars and organisations have tacitly conceptualised value co-creation as a set of processes or activities where participants know how to act, or ‘know the score’ – however, this is not always the case. In this paper, we argue for a deeper appreciation of the symbiotic relationship between value experiences and value co-creation practices, particularly in collaborative consumption contexts in which meanings may be shared as much as behaviours. Practices, comprising shared understandings of what to do and say, procedures and engagements in situated contexts, embed individuals in the social world, tie us to each other, and, as a result, frame individuals’ lived, embodied experiences of value. While practices are not possessions or characteristics of individuals, individuals are carriers of various value co-creation practices, which need not be coordinated with each other. As a result, individuals represent unique embodiments of diverse levels of participation in multiple practices within a cultural or social group. We also suggest that individual sensemaking of the value experiences which emerge from value co-creation practices, while socially constructed, is intersubjectively and phenomenologically determined. Therefore, rather than solely adopting either a phenomenological or a practice based perspective to explore the contours of value co-creation, we seek to entwine them, by examining individual value experiences which emerge from individuals’ concurrent participation in multiple value co-creation practices in collaborative consumption contexts.

The aims of the paper are to examine participants’ experiences of practices in a collective consumption context in order to illuminate how value is co-created through participation in such practices; and to explore specifically the role of meaning co-creation in the individual value experiences which emerge. Framed by a relational constructionist approach, this study explores how multiple participants – musicians, conductors, audience members, and staff – experience value co-creation in the context of their participation in 47 orchestral, educational and outreach events facilitated by the London Symphony Orchestra, one of the world’s leading orchestras. Participant narratives were collected using 47 depth interviews, 375 short interviews, and non participant netnography over a six month period. Using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis, 20 value co-creation practices and 13 value experiences were induced from the data. The findings and discussion illustrate how the LSO has sought to broaden participation in orchestral consumption practices by co-creating meaning for novice, amateur and expert participants through a variety of co-creation practices. We also develop nine propositions relating to the individual experience of value co-creation practices in collaborative contexts.

In conclusion, this paper integrates experiential and practice based perspectives of value by illustrating that value emerges from the shared understandings between conductors (service organisation managers) and participants (regular, novice and potential service consumers, front and back office service personnel and other service providers within a service value network) participating in a multiplicity of value co-creation practices. Value co-creation practices maintain, sustain and reinforce the sacred on behalf of participants and frame their experiences. Co-creating value therefore requires service organisations to deconsecrate or ‘open up the score’ for novice participants; specifically, to share the understandings, engagements, and procedures embedded in such practices. These concern not just how-to-act but also how-to-interpret, which in turn may be negatively experienced by expert participants.


  • Shared Understanding
  • Situate Context
  • Audience Member
  • Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis
  • Deep Appreciation

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© 2015 Academy of Marketing Science

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Kelleher, C., Wilson, H., Peppard, J. (2015). The Score is not the Music: Practices and Value in Collaborative Consumption Contexts. In: Kubacki, K. (eds) Ideas in Marketing: Finding the New and Polishing the Old. Developments in Marketing Science: Proceedings of the Academy of Marketing Science. Springer, Cham.

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