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2nd Consumer Research Summit

Place & Identity: advancing theory and practice

Tuesday 20th June 2017 (The Bluecoat, Chester)

Submission deadline (full papers/research pitches) 31st March 2017

Theme and aims of the summit

Bangor Business School (BBS) is holding its 2nd summit on place and identity.  The importance of place in fostering strong relationships (e.g., Brocato et al., 2015), as well as the complexity that arises in marketing a place (Warnaby and Medway, 2013) has gained considerable attention over the past decade.  As such, the summit aims to bring together scholars, practitioners and students of marketing, tourism, urban planning and related fields to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas around the theory and practice of place marketing.  The summit is focused on creating valuable discussion on the multidisciplinary nature of marketing exploring two distinct themes: 

  • The role of place for consumers’ identity

In the consumption of ‘place’ as a product, whether in the realm of services or place as a geographical entity (town, city, region, country), the inherent identity and the historical and cultural roots of a place play a significant role in cultivating consumer and stakeholder bonds.  

Consumers’ attachment to a place may help support or develop aspects of their identity (Twigger-Ross and Uzzell, 1996) and subsequently drive consumer behaviour (Halpenny, 2010; Johnstone, 2012).  Similarly, the role of social interactions between consumers in a retail setting colours consumers’ perceptions and behaviours, suggesting that not only can a place shape consumers’ identity, but consumers can shape the identity of a place, too (Johnstone and Conroy, 2008). As such, the role of place in facilitating or restricting consumption with consequences on self-perceptions is an interesting and relevant area to be explored (e.g., Hamilton and Hassan, 2010).

  • Place marketing: a business perspective

The evolution of place marketing is a political process involving engagement with the interests and aspirations of various stakeholder groups (Eshuis et al., 2013).  This dynamic process of collaboration and the balance between cooperation and competition has its roots in the literature on destination marketing (Palmer and Bejou, 1995; Wang and Krakover, 2008; Wang, 2008).  In this context, Therkelsen and Halkier (2008) discuss the notion of place brand umbrellas and consider the importance of organizational relations between promotional bodies.  They argue that in order for strategy to be efficient, a cross-sectional communication platform has to take into account the functional contexts in which consumers will be interpreting the place.  Hanna and Rowley (2015) however, propose a more permissive and flexible concept; the place brand web.  In studying the complex nature of the relationships between the brands associated with a place and vice versa, the authors argue that the range of these relationships will vary from place to place and that the varying level of their autonomy will also determine their significance and therefore the level of influence they have over collaboration.

Taking the above two themes together, ‘place’ is not only being acknowledged as an evolving product, it is progressively being regarded as a dynamic concept in need of strategic direction and management (Warnaby and Medway, 2013; Hanna and Rowley, 2015).  

Published in the Journal of Place Management and Development, please access the Conference Report on our 1st summit titled “Place and marketing in a dynamic world” as provided by Professor Gary Warnaby.

The summit is organized by the BBS Consumer Behaviour Research Cluster

Special guest speakers

The following keynote speaker and voice-over presenters are confirmed:

Professor Cathy Parker (keynote): Professor of Marketing and Retail Enterprise at Manchester Metropolitan University Business School.  Professor Parker is also the Director for the Institute of Place Management (IPM), the professional institute for all those involved in making places better and the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Place Management and Development.

Dr Efe Sevin (voice-over presenter): Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Media and Communication Research, University of Fribourg, Switzerland. Dr Sevin’s current research focuses on the role of nation branding and public diplomacy campaigns on achieving political goals and foreign policy objectives.



Professor Nicolas Papadopoulos (voice-over presenter): Chancellor’s Professor, Carleton University, Canada. With 300+ publications, he is recognized as a leading researcher in international strategy and place images and branding. He has received numerous awards, including the 2016 AMA award for long-term impact, and is a member of the Senior Advisory/Editorial Review Boards of eight journals.



  • Brocato, E.D., Baker, J., and Voorhees, C.M. (2015), “Creating consumer attachment to retail service firms through sense of place,” Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 43, pp. 200–220.
  • Eshuis, J., Braun, E., and Klijin, E. (2013), “Place marketing as governance strategy: an assessment of obstacles in place marketing and their effects on attracting target groups”, Public Administration, 70, pp. 507-516.
  • Hamilton, K., and Hassan, L.M. (2010), “Tobacco consumption in the home: Impact on social relationships and marking territory,” Advances in Consumer Research, 37.
  • Halpenny, E.A. (2010), “Pro-environmental behaviours and park visitors: The effect of place attachment,” Journal of Environmental Psychology, 30, pp. 409-421.
  • Hanna, S., and Rowley, J. (2015), “Towards a model of the place brand web,” Tourism Management, 48, pp. 100-112.
  • Johnstone, M-L., and Conroy, D.M. (2008), “Place attachment: The social dimensions of the retail environment and the need for further exploration,” Advances in Consumer Research, 35, pp. 381-386.
  • Palmer, A., and Bejou, D. (1995), “Tourism destination marketing alliances,” Annals of Tourism research, 22, pp.616-629.
  • Therkelsen, A. and Halkier, H. (2008), “Contemplating place branding umbrellas. The case of coordinated national tourism and business promotion in Denmark,” Scandinavian Journal of Hospitality and Tourism, 8, pp.159-175.
  • Twigger-Ross, C.L., and Uzzell, D.L. (1996), “Place and identity processes,” Journal of Environmental Psychology, 16, 205-220.
  • Wang, Y., and Krakover, S. (2008), “Destination marketing: competition, cooperation or coopetition?” International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 20, pp.126-141.
  • Wang, Y. (2008), “Collaborative destination marketing understanding the dynamic process,” Journal of travel Research, 47, pp.151-166.
  • Warnaby, G., and Medway, D. (2013), “What about the ‘place’ in place marketing?” Marketing Theory, 13, pp. 345–363.

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