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Doctor of Philosophy
The Oxford School of Hospitality Management
Oxford Brookes Business School
Currently working on a number of project related to consumer behaviour. Below are two examples of most recent research.
First of examples is a project which focuses on development of new theoretical approaches to family decisions. This project considers decision-making from perspective of distributed cognition that recognises the broad ecology of the system in which group members purchase and consume products and services.
The second example is a project concerning post crisis communications using digital channels. The specific interest is around ways in which employer and consumer brands can effectively engage with a range of audiences on platforms and channels preferred by these audiences.
Drawing on cumulative prospect theory (CPT), we measured the risk and motivational factors involved in “canal boat tours” and used these to test conceptual models to predict canal boat tour participant’s behavioural intentions in France. Data were collected using face-to-face questionnaire surveys and subjected to rigorous analysis. In-depth interviews provided deeper insight into participants’ post-purchase behaviour. Assessment of the study results using two key features of CPT – diminishing sensitivity and risk aversion – confirmed that this theory can explain how risk and motivational factors interact to drive canal boat tour participants’ post-purchase behaviours.
Purpose. Advances have been made in the provision of nutritional and ingredient information on packaged food, however, there is a need to translate this to eating out reflecting consumer desire for greater transparency and knowledge of menu content. The purpose of this paper is to assess consumer’s preferences for food information presentation in four European countries (UK, Greece, Denmark and France) in a workplace dining setting.
Design/methodology/approach. This study focusses on workplace canteens since the regularity in which they are used provides an important context and potential for behaviour change. An exploratory phase designed iteratively in collaboration with experts, end-users and researchers (qualitative) informed a survey (quantitative) conducted in four European countries. The survey was used to examine workplace diners’ preferences towards food information presentation.
Findings. Differences were found and clustered (n=5) to “heuristic processors” (33 per cent) “brand orientated” (25 per cent) “systematic processors” (17.3 per cent) “independent processors” (16.1 per cent) and “tech-savvy” (8.6 per cent). Dual-process theories were used to analyse the findings and produce new insight into how menu information can be most effectively delivered.
Originality/value. When eating-out consumers struggle to make choices or make the wrong choice from a health perspective, partly caused by a lack of nutrient profile information as well as other criteria of concern. Giving catering managers the understanding of preferred communication channels can enable a more competitive operator. Traffic light labelling was the optimal presentation with the opportunity for consumers to discover more detailed information if desired. For the first time this research has given operational clarity whilst allowing food providers to be considered as part of corporate health.