A Service Conference That Tastes Unique

The next International Research Conference in Service Management will take place in the beautiful site of La Londe from June 10th to June 13th 2018.

Maybe it is because of the beauty of this location that over the years this Conference has become known among the service community as the “La Londe Service Conference”.

In May 2017, the SERVSIG newsletter has hosted a brief history of the conference written by one of its founders, Pierre Eiglier. Now, we would like to describe some basic ingredients of the “La Londe recipe” that contribute to its unique taste.

Ingredient # 1: The location

The conference takes place in La Londe les Maures, a small town (around 10.000 residents) located in the southeastern part of France, between Toulon and Saint Tropez.

The conference takes place in a quiet spot just outside the town, in a resort composed of small, well-appointed villas, surrounded by the vineyards and 10 minutes walking distance from the beach. Apart from jogging and walking near the vineyards or going to the beach, there are not too many distractions around the conference location. This relaxed environment motivates participants to attend all sessions for their entire duration. This is why we keep organizing the conference in this nice and quiet place.

Ingredient # 2 : The time for presentation and discussion

At La Londe, we spend more time discussing the papers than presenting them. With 45 minutes devoted to each presentation – 20 minutes to present, and 25 to discuss – the audience has the time to react to the presentation, reflect, start a debate with the presenter and the audience, and provide numerous feedback to the presenters. At La Londe, you just don’t present research papers, you rather talk about them. This is why we ask to submit a full paper (although we just publish the abstract to let authors submit the full paper to a journal). We need to select papers that are able, among others, to stimulate discussion, foster debates and generate new ideas. This is also why we ask authors to present their latest research that is not published yet; we wish to contribute to the development of the authors’ ideas.

Ingredient # 3: The number of concurrent sessions

We have kept the number of concurrent sessions very small, that is typically two. We believe that the conference pace benefits from such a small number. With only two sessions, participants do not have to run around from one room to the other, worrying about which session they will attend the next presentation. In addition, this limited choice favors the presence of participants from diverse research fields and interests, resulting in more interdisciplinary feedback.

Ingredient # 4: The trip to the island

The trip to the Porquerolles island is a great occasion to socialize, to relax and to get to know better the conference attendees. We walk together to the port and take together the boat. Once on the island, some of us like to walk up the castle, some love to sunbath on the beach, others like to rent bikes and explore this car-free island. On the boat, during our way back, it is nice to hear people telling each other how they spent their time on the island.

There is no good recipe without a good blend of the ingredients. What blends them all together at La Londe is the enthusiasm, the passion and the generosity our great service community!

The members of the Scientific Committee and their respective tracks for the 2018 edition are:

Mike Brady (Marketing/HRM Interface), Joy Field (Service Operations), Pierre Eiglier (Strategy and Economics), and Jochen Wirtz (Marketing).

Join us for the next La Londe Service Conference (https://iae-aix.univ-amu.fr/en/lalonde-conference-2018) and send your contribution by January 31st 2018!

Kiane Goudarzi, Sylvie Llosa, Lionel Nicod and Chiara Orsingher


In 2018, the La Londe Service Conference is taking place just before the SERVSIG conference.  La Londe conference will end on June 13th around noon, and the SERVSIG conference (www.ieseg.fr/servsig-2018) will start on June, 14th with an opening reception in the evening.

A fast train (http://www.voyages-sncf.com) will take you from Toulon to Paris in less than 4 hours!