Consumer Behaviour Research
Recent and current research projects we are working on include:
• Brand Dislike (Professor Margaret Hogg) - In order to increase understanding of the relationships between consumers and their brands, the ‘Brand Dislike’ study examines negative aspects and feelings about brands and their images. We are currently undertaking a cross-cultural validation of the Brand Dislike Scale developed by leading Italian academics based in the University of Pisa, headed by Dr Simona Romani and Prof Daniele Dalli
• Alcohol consumption (Dr. Maria Piacentini) – This programme of research explores young people's alcohol consumption in order to understand more about the social worlds of young people and the role that alcohol plays in their lives.
• New Mothers Project (Professor Margaret Hogg) - The specific focus of this project is on the identity projects of new mothers. Using qualitative methods we seek to explore women’s consumption experiences and choices during pregnancy, birth and in the early months of motherhood, focusing on the means by which women negotiate this transition and deal with the expectations and realities of motherhood.
• Disadvantaged young people's transition to adulthood (Dr. Maria Piacentini and Professor Margaret Hogg). We are investigating young disadvantaged consumers' experiences in the market place in obtaining essential products and services such as accommodation, utilities and foodstuffs (i.e. Maslow's basic needs). This research will help us to identify those aspects of young people’s consumption lives that result in experiences of powerlessness or lack of control within their social environments. The research will inform policy making about how to ease young adults' transition into independent living.
• The relationship between mixed emotions and approach and avoidance conflicts in consumer behaviour (Professor Margaret Hogg) This research aims to identify the inter-relationships between mixed emotions and firstly, the key features of products and services; secondly, the influential characteristics of the retail situations; and thirdly, the personal disposition (e.g. attitudes to risk) of consumers.
• Ethical Consumption (Dr Morven McEachern) – This research explores ethical consumers’ commitment and responsibility towards a range of ethical consumption behaviours (e.g. boycotts/anti-consumption, environmental sustainability, food ethics) and in particular the role of flexibility in their consumption behaviours.
• Agri-Food Marketing (Dr Morven McEachern) Research exploring the agri-food sector’s 'reconnection' activities within the context of farmer's markets and box schemes. Particular focus is given to consumers' and their attitudes towards sustainable food practices and local buying behaviours.
• Cultural factors in consumer brand image perceptions in different cultural contexts (Dr Laura Salciuviene). This research aims to develop our understanding of perceptions of brand image dimensions in different cultural contexts; and investigates how far the differences and similarities in consumer perceptions are a function of a consumer’s personal values
• Eschatology and sustainable consumption (Dr Jim Freund) Using visual and linguistic stimulus materials and projective techniques in depth interviews, this study draws out respondents’ explicit and implicit theories, rationales and emotional reactions to the prospect of environmental catastrophe, and explores how their personal Eschatologies inform their beliefs about the (un-)sustainability of their lifestyles and what can or should be done about it.