Title: Changing lifestyles in the age of fear: projective analysis of social insecurity and consumption patterns

Authors: Pável Reyes-Mercado; Julieta Mercado-González; Diana Dávila-Ruiz

Addresses: Economics and Business School, Universidad Anáhuac México Norte, Mexico ' Economics and Business School, Universidad Anáhuac México Norte, Mexico ' Graduate Management Department, Universidad de Monterrey, Mexico

Abstract: This paper analyses the influence of social insecurity, consumer responses, and changes in consumption behaviour. The paper contributes to existing literature by including fear in consumer vulnerability domain. Due to the apparent research gaps in the field and scarce literature, as exploratory approach we chose a qualitative technique: an adaptation of the Zaltman Metaphor Elicitation Technique (ZMET) was used to gather metaphors for sensitive themes that are better expressed in terms of pictures and associative ideas. Under the basis of 64 projective interviews of victims or related to victims of social insecurity, their interpretations through symbolic imagination of the meaning of consumption in the face of public insecurity are identified. Results reveal that strong consumers' emotions are central to understand the consumption phenomena: fear, its sources, and its consequences in the form of changing lifestyles and purchase patterns are broad themes. Implications for managers, policy makers, and future research are offered.

Keywords: social insecurity; fear; purchasing patterns; consumer behaviour; projective techniques; Zaltman Metaphor Elicitation Technique; ZMET; changing lifestyles; social insecurity; consumption patterns; consumer response; consumer vulnerability; public insecurity.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBCG.2016.079939

International Journal of Business Competition and Growth, 2016 Vol.5 No.1/2/3, pp.72 - 90

Received: 05 Apr 2016
Accepted: 30 Apr 2016

Published online: 22 Oct 2016 *

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