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Developing country perceptions of high‐ and low‐involvement products manufactured in other countries

Kojo Saffu (Brock University, St Catharines, Canada)
Don Scott (Southern Cross University, Lismore, Australia)

International Journal of Emerging Markets

ISSN: 1746-8809

Article publication date: 10 April 2009



The aim of this paper is to examine the quality perceptions of developing country consumers in Malaysia and Papua New Guinea (PNG), on a high‐ and low‐involvement product (personal computer and shoes) produced by the manufacturing countries of origin of the USA, Australia, Italy and Brazil.


The country‐of‐origin (COO) effect on quality perceptions was measured by exploring interactive effect differences, using analysis of variance.


The findings from this study were first, that consumers in PNG evaluated their homemade products less favourably than foreign‐made products. Second, that COO effects influence consumers' preferences differently in the case of high‐ and low‐involvement products and third, that analyses using overall mean values instead of interaction effects can lead to incorrect interpretations. The results also supported the widely held view that consumers hold stereotypical views of products made in different foreign countries but disagreed about the nature of such stereotypical views.

Practical implications

The main implications of this study are first, that more attention needs to be paid to a product's COO when marketing to consumers in Malaysia and PNG. Second, that in the case of high‐ and low‐involvement products, marketing managers should take special care to examine the impact of COO effects. Third, that COO research should take care to correctly evaluate and use interaction effects since the simple use of overall mean values can produce very different and incorrect interpretations.


This paper makes important contributions to the COO and consumer ethnocentrism research.



Saffu, K. and Scott, D. (2009), "Developing country perceptions of high‐ and low‐involvement products manufactured in other countries", International Journal of Emerging Markets, Vol. 4 No. 2, pp. 185-199.



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