Marketing Seminar - Professor Darren Dahl

Seminar Room 10.039, The Spot Building (198 Berkeley St)


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Dr Greg Nyilasy

T: +61 3 9035 4016

PRESENTER: Professor Darren Dahl (Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia)
TOPIC: “Hurts So Good: Status Products That Incur Environmental Costs are Preferred by Status-Striving Customers” 

The production of status products often takes a physical toll on natural resources. We propose that for some consumers, the environmental costs of production (i.e., the damage or destruction to an environmental resource in order to produce a product) make status products more, rather than less, appealing. Six studies examine the conditions under which consumers prefer status products that incur environmental costs to those that do not. Data reveal that consumers who have high (vs. low) status-striving motivation prefer status products that have incurred environmental costs. We show that the destruction of an environmental resource during the production of a status product symbolically expresses consumers’ dominance. Consequently, the status object produced represents elevated social status via the pathway of personal dominance. These effects occur (1) in the context of status (vs. non-status) product categories, and (2) when consumers are both expressing preferences and making product choices. Finally, the hypothesized effect is attenuated when the production processes for status products are excessive but do not impose environmental costs.

Darren Dahl is the Senior Associate Dean – Faculty, Director of the Robert H. Lee Graduate School, and the B.C. Council Innovation Professor at the University of British Columbia. His current research interests are in the areas of new product design and development, creativity, consumerproduct adoption, the role of social influence in consumer behavior, and understanding the role of self-conscious emotions in consumption. His research has been published in journals as the Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Marketing, Journal of ConsumerResearch, Management Science, and Journal of Consumer Psychology.  He currently is an associate editor of the Journal of Marketing Research and is the past editor-in-chief of the Journal of Consumer Research. He serves on the editorial board of the Journal of ConsumerResearch, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Consumer Psychology, and the International Journal of Research in Marketing. He has won awards for both his research (e.g., Killam Research Prize) and his teaching (e.g., 3M Teaching Fellow, Economist Business Professor of the Year) efforts. Before coming to UBC he held a faculty appointment at the University of Manitoba for four years. He also has been a visiting professor at Stanford (2009), Columbia University (2008), Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (in 1997 and in 2001) and the Thammasat University in Thailand (2005, 2006). Before entering academia, Dr. Dahl worked with Coopers & Lybrand chartered accountants in the areas of audit and insolvency. He has consulted and organized education programs for Cathay Pacific, Procter & Gamble, Xerox, General Electric, YVR, VancouverPublic Health, Teekay Shipping, Hagensborg Foods, Lululemon Athletica, Earls Restaurants, BCLC, Agent Provocateur, Daehong Advertising – Korea, and LIC India.

RSVPs are not necessary.