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What are the social and personal drivers to engage in co-creation? A study of UK 7–13-year-olds

Robert James Thomas (Aston Business School, Aston University, Birmingham, UK)
Gareth Reginald Terence White (Faculty of Business and Society, University of South Wales, Pontypridd, UK)
Anthony Samuel (Department of Marketing and Strategy, Cardiff University Business School, Cardiff, UK)

Young Consumers

ISSN: 1747-3616

Article publication date: 10 February 2021

Issue publication date: 7 July 2021




The purpose of this paper is to explore the social and personal drivers of co-creation in children.


A sample of 463 children aged between 7 and 13 years were recruited. Using electronic event-based diaries, 2,631 entries were captured during an 18-month period.


Data from 861 entries identified a series of anomalous external social and personal factors that drove children to engage in co-creation. These were for maintaining external relationships, dealing with addiction to the co-creation process and dealing with personal loneliness.

Research limitations/implications

The study reveals new, unconventional and gender-specific behaviours that might assist marketers in understanding children’s complex relationships with co-creation and brands.


To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first study of its kind to examine children’s social and personal drives to engage in co-creation.



Thomas, R.J., White, G.R.T. and Samuel, A. (2021), "What are the social and personal drivers to engage in co-creation? A study of UK 7–13-year-olds", Young Consumers, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 202-218.



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