The Connected Customer: Essays on Individualistic-Collectivistic Decision-making

  • Author / Creator
    Enström, Rickard
  • The traditional approach to the study of consumer behaviour is to regard them as isolated islands of preferences, needs, motives, and goals; however, this approach neglects the impact of ‘others’ on consumers’ judgments and preferences. For this reason, the theme of this thesis is the ‘connected customer’. Chapter 2 and 3 provides a theoretical and empirical treatment of a situation often encountered in households: how do an individual’s private risk preferences translate into preferences over risk when making decisions on behalf of a group of people in which the decision-maker is a member? It is hypothesized that the decision-maker’s degree of altruism and perception of the group members’ risk preferences are the driving forces in the relation between private and social risk preferences. The results suggest that social preferences can be characterized as a mixture of individuals’ private risk preferences and the beliefs-private risk differential. Chapter 4 looks at individuals’ information processing strategy under conditions of low and high cultural salience. Recent findings suggest that consumers in both individualist and collectivist cultures use a dual processing approach—a heuristic versus a systematic processing strategy—when assessing product alternatives. However, collectivist members tend to rely more on consensus information than attribute. This chapter examines whether priming individuals on their cultural identity will make them to switch processing strategy toward consensus information and hence become more similar to collectivist members. The results largely support this prediction.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
    • School of Business
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Terry Elrod (School of Business, University of Alberta)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Joffre Swait (School of Business, University of Alberta)
    • Dilip Soman (Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto)
    • Yuanfang Lin (School of Business, University of Alberta)
    • Wiktor Adamowicz (Department of Rural Economy, University of Alberta)
    • Adam Finn (School of Business, University of Alberta)