Co-creation of social value: An assessment on the opportunities of co-creation in the Danish music industry

Troes F. Jensen & Benjamin Nidam

Student thesis: Master thesis


The cultural industries are defined by their high degree of uncertainty. The music industry is no exception, as it has been faced with serious challenges in the past decade. Illegal downloads are threatening the industry in general, and companies in the Danish music industry are suffering financially. Motivated by that fact, this thesis seeks to explore new ways of generating revenue for the Danish music industry. We argue that co-creation of social value with consumers could be a valuable way for a company to create loyalty among consumers and redefine itself to stay relevant in a troubled industry. The aim of this thesis is to investigate and assess the legitimacy and possibilities co-creation of social value in the Danish music industry. Our contribution to co-creation literature is twofold: First, we add the term social value to the discourse. This is done to cope with the complexity of the cultural industries that the Danish music industry is a part of. We argue that value is created socially and utilized socially around a cultural product such as music. Second, the cultural industries have been somewhat neglected in the discourse on co-creation, so our aim with this thesis is to shift the focus on to these industries with a study in a specific contextual field: The Danish music industry. We argue that companies and artists in this industry can generate novel and useful ideas and, in the long term, competitive advantage by incorporating lead users into their idea generation processes. The primary purpose of the thesis is to add to the discourse on co-creation of value by adding specific ideas, and in conducting a contextual research on the subject. We stress that co-creation of social value indeed is possible, and possibly very useful, but also that every business context must be assessed individually to avoid the tensions and risks inherent in co-creation of social value. The secondary purpose is an attempt to bridge two different, but complementary academic disciplines. Our findings are based on a mixture of theories and methods from the social sciences and from business studies. We argue that this type of research can be beneficial for academics and managers in the cultural industries.

EducationsMSocSc in Management of Creative Business Processes , (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2011
Number of pages147