Universities play a significant role in the economic development of society as they pro- vide knowledge and skills that are essential for social sustainability. In recent years, universities shifted their focus towards student-centered education and need to reconsider their sustainable strategies to become more competitive by encouraging student co-creation behaviors. To create a unique experience, universities aim to involve students in creating and delivering their educational experiences. The purpose of this paper is to investigate how the perceived quality of educational service and the institutional image of a university influence students’ value co-creation behavior, and the role of loyalty in this process. The study is based on two complementary studies conducted in an Italian public university. The first study involved 720 undergraduate students with one business management bachelor’s degree who completed a questionnaire to collect primary data. The second study used six focus groups to identify which specific students’ experiences and university activities stimulated co-creation behaviors. The results show that student loyalty plays an important mediating role between university image, students’ quality perception, and co-creation behavior. Additionally, only three dimensions of quality, namely quality non-academy aspects, quality reputation, and quality access have an impact on students’ loyalty. Therefore, only two dimensions of brand image, university brand knowledge (UK), and university brand prestige (UPR) have a direct effect on value co-creation behavior. These findings have important implications for higher education institutions (HEIs) to develop managerial strategies that increase students’ co-creation behavior. The co-creation process should be considered as part of HEIs’ image-building and quality policy-enhancing strategy. Despite the value co-creation approach being overlooked in studies on HEIs governance, this study highlights its potential as a strategic approach for improving service quality and university image.

Student’s Co-Creation Behavior in a Business and Economic Bachelor’s Degree in Italy: Influence of Perceived Service Quality, Institutional Image, and Loyalty

Pinna R
;
Cicotto G.
;
2023-01-01

Abstract

Universities play a significant role in the economic development of society as they pro- vide knowledge and skills that are essential for social sustainability. In recent years, universities shifted their focus towards student-centered education and need to reconsider their sustainable strategies to become more competitive by encouraging student co-creation behaviors. To create a unique experience, universities aim to involve students in creating and delivering their educational experiences. The purpose of this paper is to investigate how the perceived quality of educational service and the institutional image of a university influence students’ value co-creation behavior, and the role of loyalty in this process. The study is based on two complementary studies conducted in an Italian public university. The first study involved 720 undergraduate students with one business management bachelor’s degree who completed a questionnaire to collect primary data. The second study used six focus groups to identify which specific students’ experiences and university activities stimulated co-creation behaviors. The results show that student loyalty plays an important mediating role between university image, students’ quality perception, and co-creation behavior. Additionally, only three dimensions of quality, namely quality non-academy aspects, quality reputation, and quality access have an impact on students’ loyalty. Therefore, only two dimensions of brand image, university brand knowledge (UK), and university brand prestige (UPR) have a direct effect on value co-creation behavior. These findings have important implications for higher education institutions (HEIs) to develop managerial strategies that increase students’ co-creation behavior. The co-creation process should be considered as part of HEIs’ image-building and quality policy-enhancing strategy. Despite the value co-creation approach being overlooked in studies on HEIs governance, this study highlights its potential as a strategic approach for improving service quality and university image.
2023
Social sustainability; Higher education; Students’ co-creation behavior; Quality of educational services; Institutional image; Students’ loyalty
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/363623
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