Science and Engineering

Service science


What is service science?

Services are a critical part of information systems, not only because service-based industries have become the biggest and fastest-growing sector in the world, but also because they are the basis by which consumers, business and communities seek value through delivered outcomes.

They enable companies to deliver business value, competitive differentiation and disruptive business models through service-enablement of:

  • business processes
  • software applications
  • big data
  • middleware platforms
  • computing infrastructure
  • smart phones, and devices related to cars
  • buildings and homes.

The prominence of services can be seen in the biggest IT trends and disruptions of the last ten years, including:

  • service-oriented architecture
  • software-as-a-service
  • cloud computing mobile computing and smart devices
  • the Internet of Things
  • global business networks
  • social media and networks.

Service science is about the study of services, service delivery systems and service-based technologies. It provides a dedicated focus on the theoretical foundations, applications, technologies and the innovations of services across organisations, industries, digital ecosystems and the web.


Research in our discipline has contributed to new advancements and insights into a wide variety of practical applications, including:

  • business strategy and digital competency
  • design-led innovation and digital transformation
  • service languages/techniques (e.g. USDL) and methods (e.g. Enterprise Architecture)
  • service platforms and ecosystems
  • social media, social networks and digital communities
  • ubiquitous computing, smart devices and multi-media.


Our academics conduct research across a broad spectrum of themes:

Technical software service analysis
Static and dynamic code analysis to support the re-engineering of large enterprise software as demand-based cloud or web services. This involves the extraction, visualisation and clustering analysis of software dependencies (structural relationships and interactions) of large software systems, interfaces and logs.
Service modeling and design
Design science capabilities related to the modelling of human to automated services inclusive of business and technical, functional and non-functional, aspects (USDL language). This is relevant for service modelling and cataloguing used in systems design and service delivery platform applications notably in the public sector (Department of Human Services).
Service-based enterprise architecture methods
Design science capabilities related to extending architecture frameworks which capture and align business and IT systems in single or multi-organisational enterprises (TOGAF/Archimate method).
Digital service platforms
Design, implementation and experimentation next-generation service delivery applications involving both commercial firms and open communities, and exploiting service co-creation capabilities of social media platforms. Applications areas relate to banking (Bank of Queensland, Suncorp) and emergency medicine (Emergency Medicine Foundation).
Personalised service consumption
Analysis and integration of personal, organisational and contextual data, using multi-­-media and mobile services. Video/audio data analysis, consumer context analysis (e.g. emotion detection), intelligent agents for service interactions and decision support.
Service innovation
design-led innovation methods in action research frameworks in various sectors with significant digital disruptions (e.g. Australia Post, Urban Utilities and Department of Human Services)


Our research has made significant contributions to QUT's Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) ratings. We received a 3 (at world standard) in library and information studies, and computer software.

ERA (Excellence in Research for Australia) evaluates the quality of research undertaken in Australian universities against national and international benchmarks.


Our discipline is responsible for teaching undergraduate and masters IT degrees across a broad spectrum of topics related to Information systems, including:

  • impact of IT
  • design thinking
  • digital disruption and innovation
  • corporate information systems
  • enterprise systems
  • mobile and pervasive systems
  • cloud information systems
  • enterprise architecture.


The Category 1 funded research projects we are currently leading are:

Transforming banking service delivery through connected communities

Project leader
Professor Alistair Barros
Project summary

This project aims to develop a deeper understanding of the potential of increased connectedness between customers for organisations in the services sector. The massive uptake of social technologies demonstrates the high demand for connectedness. However, to date, corporations and their customers have insufficient means to utilise such communities.

Through the banking sector, the project's outcomes intend to show how digital communities can improve the delivery of services and facilitate new co-delivery and brokerage models.

Legacy2Service: A novel, model-driven technique for re-engineering on-demand software services out of legacy applications

Project leader
Professor Alistair Barros
Project summary

The proliferation of software-as-a-service applications from 'dotcom' players is raising expectations that other industries will make their critical desktop and mainframe software available as web-enabled software-as-a- service and mobile apps. However, manually re-engineering legacy software is notoriously costly and frequently unsuccessful.

This project will make it easier and quicker to turn stand-alone programs into online services by automating much of the process. Specifically, it will develop tools for:

  • analysing program code to identify points to implement service interfaces
  • displaying existing and new code dependencies visually
  • help with design and implementation of new software layers that link legacy services to the web.

The women's wellness after cancer program

Project leaders
Professor Debra Anderson, A. McCarthy, Professor Patsy Yates, M. Turner, N.King, L. Monterosso, M. Krishnasamy, K. White, S. Hall, Associate Professor Dian Tjondronegoro
Project summary

The women’s wellness after cancer program (WWACP) is a national, collaborative project to develop, trial and evaluate the clinical benefits and cost effectiveness of an e-health enabled structured health promotion intervention. It is targeted at improving health related quality of life (HRQoL) and reducing key chronic disease risk factors in women previously treated for haematological, breast and gynaecological cancers.

It is proposed that sustainable positive lifestyle change can be obtained and sustained more effectively and efficiently using current interactive technologies such as online consultations, reminders and encouragement via phone and tablet apps, and through the various educational and informative resources available on a dynamic, interactive website and online community.

Student topics

Are you looking to further your career by pursuing study at a higher and more detailed level? We are currently looking for students to research with us. Contact our staff to find out more about research opportunities, or take a look at our student topics.


School of Information Systems

  • Level 8, P Block, Science and Engineering Centre
    Gardens Point