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An empirical study of the marketing dynamics of the Fairtrade Towns movement

Samuel, Anthony ORCID: 2012. An empirical study of the marketing dynamics of the Fairtrade Towns movement. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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Abstract This study explores the marketing dynamics of the Fairtrade Towns movement in the United Kingdom and presents unique, empirical insights and understandings of its place-based marketing dynamics. It recognises that Fairtrade Towns, despite their rapid growth and recognition as a major contributor to Fairtrade marketing, still remain significantly under-researched. It also argues that the activities of Fairtrade Towns need to be considered through a marketing lens and presents a comprehensive application of grounded theory, to empirically capture the marketing dynamics of Fairtrade Towns directly from the people and places that socially construct them. This study theorises that Fairtrade Towns have capitalised upon the significance of symbolic interactionism to develop their marketing dynamic. It argues that Fairtrade Towns have embraced consumer culture and have used media not necessarily associated with marketing practices to validate their actions. It theorises that the Fairtrade Towns movement has generated a marketing dynamic built upon both intrinsic and extrinsic validity. Intrinsic validation transpires from better quality products, increased availability and the development of the Fairtrade mark. Extrinsic validity emerges from the strengths, backgrounds, skills, situations and symbolic value of other people, places and social movements. Fairtrade Towns demonstrate an ability to identify spaces and places not normally recognised for their marketing potential. This study explores how Fairtrade Towns transform and develop these spaces and places into media capable of effectively marketing Fair trade products. Fairtrade Towns display increasing consumer citizenship sophistication, achieved through a marketing dynamic, emerging from a collision between sustainable/ethical consumption, place and responsibility. Fairtrade Towns are therefore presented as a place where marketing functions are socially constructed around a ‘unique to place’ ethos, in which people and places are developed to their full potential in their capacity and desire to increase Fair Trade consumption wherever and whenever possible.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 10 Oct 2023 12:29

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