Elaborating on modular interfaces in multi-provider contexts

Vincent Peters, Mervi Vähätalo, Bert Meijboom*, Alice Barendregt, Vinus Bok, Esther de Vries

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – This study examines how modular interfaces manifest in multi-provider contexts and how they can improve coordination and customization of services. The aim of the study is to describe interfaces in multi- provider contexts and elaborate on how they support the delivery of integrated patient care. Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative, multiple case study was conducted in two multi-provider contexts in healthcare services: one representing paediatric Down syndrome care in the Netherlands and one representing home care for the elderly in Finland. Data collection involved semi-structured interviews in both contexts.
Findings – This study provides insight into several types of interfaces and their role in multi-provider contexts. Several inter- and intra-organizational situations were identified in which the delivery of integrated patient care was jeopardized. This study describes how interfaces can help to alleviate these situations.
Originality/value – This study deepens the understanding of interfaces in service modularity by describing interfaces in multi-provider contexts. The multi-provider contexts studied inspired to incorporate the inter-organizational aspect into the literature on interfaces in service modularity. This study further develops the typology for interfaces in modular services by adding a third dimension to the typology, that is, the orientation of interfaces.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1397-1419
JournalInternational Journal of Operations & Production Management
Issue number9
Early online dateSept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sept 2020


  • Interfaces
  • Service modularity
  • Integrated patient care
  • Health services


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