An introduction to the Business School's Marketing research group, including its list of academic staff members, group research and seminar series.

Research & Impact in Marketing

Mary Brennan discusses her research on food systems transformation and its positive impact on helping to create a sustainable future in Scotland.

Jake Ansell discusses his and Tina Harrison’s research on financial education and its positive impact on government policy, student performance, financial confidence.

Teea Palo discusses her research into the influence of narratives on sustainable markets, using the example of Santa Claus to explore how Finnish Lapland leveraged the myth to transform into a top Christmas tourism destination.

Ben Marder discusses his research on revealing the unintended consequences of marketing technologies, particularly in the context of online reviews, uncovering how the mere imagination of reviews prompts employees to provide exceptional service.

As a community of researchers, the Marketing Group contains experts in quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods who are deeply curious about marketing and marketplace phenomena. We are driven to make meaningful contributions to academic theorising and debate, and to enhance consumer, citizen, and societal wellbeing.

Engaging in a range of international research collaborations, we thrive on dialogue and collaboration across disciplines: our work draws on diverse theoretical frameworks and is published in leading international journals within and beyond the marketing discipline.

Digital marketing strategy and consumer behaviour

Digital is at the heart of our research on strategy and consumer behaviour. Drawing from social psychology, marketing, and management, we study both firms’ strategic use of cutting-edge technologies and the impact of consumer engagement with such technologies.

Adopting a pragmatic research approach, we are committed to producing world-leading research that advances theory, guides business practice, and public policy, and is of interest to the general public.

Consumption, markets, and culture

Informed by consumer culture theory and drawing on a range of disciplines, our interpretive research on consumption explores how people experience and make sense of their lives through consumption practices and consumer culture.

We focus on four key areas:

  • Our family consumption research explores parental and grandparental roles, identities, and relationships, and family food consumption practices.
  • Researching consumer vulnerability and resilience, we focus on stigma, healthcare consumption, and sense making in relation to illness, dying, and bereavement.
  • Our research on media consumption includes consumer interpretations of gendered relations and representations, and of shocking, offensive, or controversial content in advertising.
  • Examining religious and spiritual consumption, we unpack issues related to identity work, agency, and affective atmospheres.

Markets, networks, and organisational practices

Our research examines organisational praxis and discourses, seeking to understand how these impact individual and collective actors in the marketplace, and relate to contemporary social and market trends.

From tourism and destination marketing to the arts market and agri-food production, from Scotland to the global south, our research explores rich contexts in three key areas:

  • Our research on institutional theory includes change triggered by institutional actors, the interdependency and collaboration of industry actors, and intersections between the market and society.
  • We research the construction and maintenance of marketplace narratives and shared identities, myth making, and value-creation.
  • We also explore organisational routines and habits, for example in relation to the 4-day working week and experiences of busyness/busylessness.

Public policy influencing positive change

Our research examines and influences policy measures affecting consumers across public, private, and third sector organisations in three key areas:

  • Sustainability
  • Financial services
  • Health and healthcare – with the goal of improving health and wellbeing at individual and societal levels


In sustainability, our work encompasses agri-food supply chains, public catering systems, consumer food decision behaviour, and tourism.

Financial services

In financial services, our work explores individuals’ financial capability and financial wellbeing, finance for SMEs and fraud and open banking.

Health and healthcare

Our research on health and healthcare includes student mental health, experiences of illness, and how these relate to marketplace structures and consumer culture, digital technology in the operating room, and prescribing behaviours of GPs.

More broadly, we are also undertaking research informing how academics work with third sector organisations to create social impact.

Research centres and networks

Discursive Families Network

The network aims to foster links between researchers interested in narratives around the family and representations of family life in popular culture.

Explore the Discursive Families Network

Research projects

Details of past and present research projects involving Marketing are detailed on the Edinburgh Research Explorer, an online hub for research publications.