Seminar series

Auditing' Yohji Yamamoto's 'Intangible Assets, Dr Michael Woodward

Date: Wednesday the 29th November, 2pm

Abstract - Fear not; my use of single quotation marks in the above title indicates that I emphatically do not intend to deliver an accountancy-themed seminar!  On the contrary, if you attend you can expect to go on a highly-visual-guided-tour deep into the heart of how we label and otherwise express what we experience. Without me wanting to give the game away, at one point in his autobiography-of-sorts, My Dear Bomb (2010), Yohji Yamamoto, a Japanese clothes-maker, says that he has dedicated his life to (and longed to create) "intangible assets" - more literally translated as "formless value".  This seminar will take the form of a systematic 'audit' of these key terms, culminating in a way of thinking which melds our so-called 'private' and 'public' realms into one-dynamic-functioning-whole.

Dr. Michael Woodward Bio: 

After working for 30 years as a haircutter, I won a scholarship to study towards my PhD. I had already gained an MA (distinction) in The Politics of Visual Representation, at the College of Art in Bradford.  In my doctoral research I set out to study ‘consumption experiences’, but ended up arguing that they don’t exist. Along the way I co-wrote a paper with Morris B. Holbrook (2013), “Dialogue on some concepts, definitions and issues pertaining to ‘consumption experiences’”, Marketing Theory, Vol. 13 No. 3, pp. 323-344.Since graduating from the PhD programme I have delivered several lectures and have continued researching - although I do not currently have regular work in academia.

The Mad Hatter Guide to Marketing, Prof alan Bradshaw from Royal Holloway

Date: Wednesday the 18th October, 2pm 

Abstract - The Mad Hatter's invocation was to move one place on and start again. Thus inspired, this is an attempt to completely theorise marketing anew and do so by in a way that might well be understood as mad as a hatter. I want to move away from the idea that marketing is about selling things to consumers. And I want to move away from the assumption that capitalism functions by selling commodities at a profit. In fact I even want to say that historically, marketing has seldom ever been about marketing. Instead I want to talk about marketing in terms of an ideology that demands a total subsumption of labour by capital. My wager is that when we, as workers, hear marketing rhetoric we know that we are being screwed. My argument, then, is that marketing is the subtle, often affective, dissemination of class warfare from above and its citation of consumer demand may well be little more than strategic misdirection.

Prof. Alan Bradshaw short bio: Alan Bradshaw is a professor in marketing at Royal Holloway, University of London. His diverse research interests include critical theory and considering the intersections between aesthetics and the market, particularly in the context of music. His work has been published in such journals as Consumption, Journal of Business Ethics, Markets & Culture, Journal of Marketing Management, Journal of Macromarketing and Marketing Theory.

From Service Encounters to Service Ecosystems: a 25-year Research Journey, Prof Steve Baron

Date: Wednesday the 15th February, 11am

Details: I started my employment as a HE Lecturer in 1968, straight from graduating; teaching statistics at the Manchester College of Commerce in the era when the statistician was seen as the accountant without the charisma. This went on for just under 20 years, by which time I became a Polytechnic Lecturer. A Polytechnic Lecturer was expected to have business experience, so I took a year’s secondment in the ‘real world’ of shopping centre marketing and management. When I came back, I was persuaded to be the Course Leader of the newly devised BA in Retail Marketing due to my extensive business experience! From then, I self-taught myself retail marketing and services marketing, and started being a serious researcher. In 1990, I attended my first service research conference, and published my first joint services marketing paper in 1992. The period 1992-2017 has been a fascinating, exciting and rewarding time for service and marketing researchers. To share the excitement you must come along to the seminar.

Steve Baron is a soon-to-be Emeritus Professor of Marketing at the University of Liverpool Management School. This is his presentational swan-song.

I-Poem ontology, Prof. Helen Woodruffe-Burton (Director of Edge Hill Business School)

Date: Wednesday the 1st of February 2017, 11am

The I-poem is constructed from a close reading of narrative data designed to trace how participants speak about themselves in the narrative stories they tell of their lived experiences. The process of analysing data in this way allows the researcher reflexively to construct an analytic mode of being in relation to the interviewee and their social reality (Edwards and Weller:2012). This seminar will illustrate how this technique has been used in our current research into the emotional impact of indebtedness on the individual consumer. It is likely to be of particular interest to qualitative researchers across a range of fields in Business and the wider social sciences.

Helen Woodruffe-Burton is Director of Edge Hill University Business School and Professor of Marketing. Helen joined Edge Hill University in September 2015 from Northumbria University Newcastle where she held the position of Professor and Subject Leader in Marketing. Previously she worked at the University of Cumbria as Director of the Graduate School and she was at Lancaster University Management School for ten years. A Chartered Marketer and elected Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, her academic career spans twenty years in HE prior to which she worked in sales and marketing within the computing and financial services sectors. Helen sits on the Executive Committee of the Academy of Marketing and is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Marketors, a City of London Livery Company.

Theorising gender, theorising fat: the material-semiotics of the obesogenic environment for professional women weight cyclers

11:00-12:30 | Wednesday 14th December |

Professor Shona Bettany, Liverpool John Moores,

Dr Ben Kerrane, University of Lancaster

In the seminal feminist work, fat is a feminist issue, Orbach (1978) posits that the cultural climate of pervasive gender inequality makes women fat.  However, 35 years later, the cultural view today remains, located as it is within dominant neo-liberal discourses of choice and responsibility, that being fat is largely due to individual lifestyle and consumption failures.  This paper seeks to revisit the relationship between fat, gender and consumer culture, challenging this focus on the individual by studying the life histories of 3 professional women working at a senior (i.e. director) level in marketing, two in the private sector, one in the public sector.  The women are categorised by extreme yo-yo dieting (or weight cycling) involving several lifecourse weight loss/gain cycles of 4+ stones.  This paper seeks to develop a theoretical framework, based on a material-semiotic approach, to fat and femininity within the construction and maintenance of a professional female identity, that counters individualistic accounts of obesity and offers understanding of the consumption practices around the emergence of the body as obese within the obesogenic environment, which has the potential to inform both academic understandings of these processes, and also social and health-related marketing practitioners.

Professor Bob Doherty, University of York

11:00-12:30 | Wednesday 30th November | Committee Room 2 - University of Liverpool Management School

Professor Bob Doherty, University of York, title TBC

Dr Ahmed Al-Abdin & Morteza Abolhasani

11-12 | Wednesday 2nd November | Room G15 Management School - Marketing Review Room

Dr Ahmed Al-Abdin, University of Liverpool Management School

Middle Eastern Consumption Practices in Flux: A Systematic Literature Review


Morteza Abolhasani, PhD Candidate, University of Liverpool Management School

Investigating the influence of musical congruity in higher education advertising: A genre congruity perspective

Workshop with Dr Lynn Sudbury-Riley, Dr Pippa Hunter-Jones and Rachel Spence

| Wednesday 28th September | Taylor Room, Sydney Jones Library, University of Liverpool

  • Dr Lynn Sudbury-Riley: Every Touchpoint Matters: Developing a Systematic Tool to Measure the Impact of Hospice Services upon Patients, their Families and Carers.
  • Dr Pippa Hunter-Jones: The Impact of Hospice Care Upon Service Users - Are we funding the right provider?
  • Rachel Spence: Health information seeking and value co-creation

Publishing workshop with views from the editors of the Journal of Services Marketing (Professor Steve Baron) and Marketing Theory (Professor Elizabeth Parsons)

| Friday 27th May 2016 |

Elizabeth Parsons

"This publishing shebang": a view from the author, reviewer and editorial desk.

The idea behind this workshop is to share and learn from each other's publishing experiences. I will kick things off with a summary of some of the key things I have learned in my journey so far as author, reviewer and editor of Marketing Theory. This will be followed by a discussion session with participants encouraged to share their own experiences good and bad.

Steve Baron

According to Michael Faraday, the secret to success in research “…is comprised in three words – Work, Finish, Publish”. With the emphasis on ‘publish’, I will share my experiences from the various perspectives I have taken – author, reviewer, Associate Editor, Editor - for the purpose of encouraging a lively discussion. What about ‘work’ and ‘finish’?  Perhaps we can ponder on the following: “…I am never satisfied until I have said as much as possible in a few words, and writing briefly takes far more time than writing at length” (Carl Friedrich Gauss)

Affect & Fantasy: The Animation and Authentication of Transcendent Realities

| Wednesday 28th April 2016 |

Patrick Lonergan, Nottingham Trent University

Dr Patrick Lonergan is a consumer researcher and currently lecturer in fashion management, marketing and communication at NottinghamTrentUniversity. His research and teaching interests are firmly located within Consumer Culture Theory. A core argument that pervades much of his work is that we cannot continue to understand aesthetic consumption by solely focusing on the consumer through a representational lens. Rather than appreciate the consumption experience as one replete with conscious “meaning”, we must also acknowledge the various minutiae i.e. intense affective energies, non-human forces, mythical narratives, magic, sorcery, mystique etc. that shape enduring dispositions and thus, guide our emotional, non-rational consumption patterns through shaping our perception of reality.

Joint event with the History, Society and Institutions KP.

The relationship between sustainability and clothing consumption: Consumer and producer perspectives

| Tuesday 22nd March 2016 |

Helen Goworek, University of Leicester School of Management

The clothing market is the second largest product sector in the UK, worth £44 billion to the economy, and consequently consumers’ purchase, use and disposal of clothing have significant sustainability impacts. Therefore, the aim of the research in this presentation is to identify factors which could potentially improve the sustainability impacts of clothing consumption, from both consumer and producer perspectives. Businesses need to achieve an understanding of consumer behaviour in relation to sustainability in order to respond to this and to influence consumption. The presentation will draw from two studies funded by Defra, in collaboration with Nottingham Trent University, conducted by a cross-disciplinary team from the fields of marketing, design and sociology. Our initial study aimed to examine which factors, if any, could influence consumers to behave more sustainably in relation to clothing purchase, maintenance and divestment. The second study, to be published this year, investigated barriers to designing products which meet consumer needs for longevity, resulting in an online report and a toolkit of relevant guidelines for product developers as its main outputs, to act as enabling factors in facilitating design for durability.

A session with a Services Marketing focus

Featuring Chris Raddats, Pippa Hunter-Jones, Morteza Abolhasani and Rachel Spence.

| 25th September 2015 |

A session with a Services Marketing focus featuring Chris Raddats, Pippa Hunter-Jones, Morteza Abolhasani and Rachel Spence.

Avi Shankar, Professor of Consumer Research at University of Bath

| 2nd December, 2015 |

Avi discussed the process of getting published in the Journal of Consumer Research. 

Marketing and the Celebrity Artist

Ian Fillis, The Stirling Management School

11am | 15th May 2015 | Committee Room 2, Management School

Content to follow

Kat Duffy, The University of Essex

11am | April 21st, 2015 | Committee Room 2, Management School

Content of talk to follow

Lynn Sudbury-Riley and Pippa Hunter-Jones, The University of Liverpool

11am | March 13th,2015 | Committee Room 2, Management School

Lynn Sudbury-Riley and Pippa Hunter-Jones, The University of Liverpool - content of talk to follow

The trials and tribulations of e-commerce for SME fashion retail brand owners

Patsy Perry and Marta Blazquez, The University of Manchester

3pm | February 10th, 2015 | Committee Room 2

We are delighted to welcome Doctor Patsy Perry, who is a Lecturer in Fashion Marketing in the School of Materials at The University of Manchester. She is currently leading an ESRC-funded Knowledge Exchange project in collaboration with computer scientists at Heriot-Watt University which is focused on the SME fashion retail sector and adoption of novel forms of product visualisation technology for e-commerce. 

Netnography Today

Robert Kozinets

3pm - 5pm | Friday, 30 May, 2014 | Refreshments in the ULMS café from 2.30pm


The Digital Virtual Dimensions of Meal Practices

Janice Denegri-Knott, Bournmouth University

3pm - 5pm | Friday 4th April, 2014 | Seminar 5 room, South Teaching Hub (formerly Law building)

Refreshments in the ULMS café from 2.30pm

In this talk I will discuss the intersection between digital virtual devices and food consumption and resultant practices they configure. While food consumption may seem, as a practice, too sensual and physical to be prone to digitisation, there are numerous ways in which food and digital technology are interwoven in cooking and eating practices.

Cooking apps, celebrity chef websites, amateur blogs and YouTube tutorials are part of a growing constellation of digital virtual platforms amateur cooks can incorporate in their meal practices.  Such practices are little understood and deserving of attention.  Drawing on depth interviews with foodies and cooking enthusiasts living in the South of England, emergence of new configurations for meal practices are documented and discussed.

Marketing Generations: Oral Histories of UK Consumer Culture

Andrea Davies & James Fitchett, University of Leicester, School of Management

3pm - 5pm | Wed 19th February, 2014 | Cypress Teaching Room 410

Theories of mass consumer culture emphasize transition, describing how social changes since the 1950s have had a profound and structural impact on the relationship between individuals, the market and commodities. These transitions can be represented and illustrated in many varied ways such as through an understanding of technology and technological change, through a theory of shifting social and cultural values, or through a model of evolving identities (Slater 1999). It can be difficult to avoid adopting an episodic and relatively linear approach to these analyses. This research project approaches the evolution of marketing and consumer culture using an oral history methodology in attempt to overcome some of the problems with simplified episodic accounts (Davies 2011; Witkowski  1999). The data is drawn from 87 individual in-depth interviews with UK women in 23 family groups. Most of the family groupings comprise three generations (grandmother-mother-daughter) although some of the data is from two generations in the same family (mother-daughter). It captures the reflections that respondent’s story about their pasts framed from an interpretation of their own present. The oral history approach adopted in this research does not seek to uncover a literal description of the past but rather is focused on memory; individual, public, community and generationa

Frontline Employee Customer Engagement in Grocery Retail Stores: A Dyadic Approach

Dr. Treasa Kearney, Keele Management School

3pm - 5pm | Wed 4th Dec, 2013 | Committee Room 1, University of Liverpool Management School

For many organisations, employee customer engagement in frontline service transactions is core to their service offering. Of particular interest into employee customer engagement has been the theoretical link between employee satisfaction (ES) and customer satisfaction (CS).

This research investigates the influence of ES on CS in a utilitarian service environment using matching dyadic data. Previous research has been predominantly hedonic in nature, for example, travel agencies (Homburg et al. 2009), knowledge intensive services (Yee et al. 2011; Jeon and Choi 2012), hotels (Chi and Gursoy 2009) and clothing stores (Netemeyer et al. 2010). These authors provide in-depth research of hedonic service environments; however a large gap remains for understanding the relationship of the ES-CS link in a utilitarian environment. In order to address this extensive gap the fundamental aim of the research was to examine frontline service transactions in a utilitarian environment. Data was collected from 15 grocery retail stores, 1030 customer respondents and 103 employee respondents. Through the use of matching dyadic data and Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) analysis the research found that ES does not positively influence CS in a grocery retail store. Thus suggesting that ES ultimately leads to CS is not an adequate representation of the ES-CS link but rather the ES-CS link is a lot more complex than initially assumed.

Reframing the Imagination in Consumer Research

Dr. Rebecca Jenkins, Bournemouth University Media School

3pm - 5pm | Wed, 6th Nov, 2013 | Committee Room 1, University of Liverpool Management School‌

This research focuses on consumption in the everyday imagination in order to develop a contextualised understanding of how different aspects of consumption sit in relation to other concerns of everyday life.  Previous research has tended to focus on consumer goods and experiences within pleasurable daydreams, such that they are considered as central to imagined scenarios, however, I argue that this methodological framing may restrict a broader understanding of the imagination and the role of consumption within it.  Drawing from phenomenological interviews with 20 individuals about their everyday experiences of imagining I suggest a reframing of the imagination in consumer research that distinguishes forms of imagining and accounts for different levels of presence for consumption practices, consumer goods/services, and consumer culture.  This contextualised approach also facilitates the recognition of a number of complexities with regard to imaginative practices and the relationship between the imagination and material reality, including the journey of dream pursuit and actualisation.  I consider the imagination as a place where we manage our emotions and outcomes for material reality, but that is also managed by material reality as we think about and imagine in-line with what is likely to transpire so as to prevent disappointment.