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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2017

Prabash Aminda Edirisingha, Jamal Abarashi, Shelagh Ferguson and Rob Aitken

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the methodological significance and potential of integrating Facebook in ethnographic research. The authors discuss how friendly…

1261

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate the methodological significance and potential of integrating Facebook in ethnographic research. The authors discuss how friendly relationships with participants could be initiated, fostered and managed by incorporating Facebook in ethnographic data collection and how such relationships deepen ethnographic interpretation.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper focuses on the methodological implications of adopting “friendship as method” during ethnographic research. The discussion is premised upon a longitudinal, multi-method ethnographic research process exploring new family identity formation in Sri Lanka and New Zealand.

Findings

Building on friendship theories, the authors suggest that Facebook engagement helps overcome three challenges inherent to ethnographic research: gaining access and immersion, capturing multiple perspectives, and developing rich and thick interpretations. The findings illustrate that adopting Facebook as a platform to strengthen friendships with research participants expands the researcher’s field by enabling him to follow the ethics and pace of conventional friendship and by inspiring dialogical interaction with participants. Thus, it is suggested that Facebook helps diluting the power hierarchy in the participant–researcher relationship and encourages participants to reveal more subtle details of their mundane lived experiences.

Originality/value

Even though researchers have often used social media interactions in ethnographic research, there is no theoretical foundation to understand how such interactions could better inform the depth and richness of research phenomena. Particularly, considering the emerging significance of social media in personal identity construction, sustenance and enactment, it is import to understand how such mediums enable researchers overcome inherent methodological complexities. Therefore, this paper contributes to literature on conventional ethnography, netnography and friendship theories by presenting a theoretical framework to understand how Facebook interaction contributes to overcome challenges in conducting ethnographic research.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 20 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 September 2015

Prabash Aminda Edirisingha, Shelagh Ferguson and Rob Aitken

The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual framework which deepens our understanding of identity negotiation and formation in a collectivistic Asian context…

1490

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual framework which deepens our understanding of identity negotiation and formation in a collectivistic Asian context. Drawing from a three-year, multi-method ethnographic research process, the authors explore how contemporary Asian consumers construct, negotiate and enact family identity through meal consumption. The authors particularly focus on the ways in which Asian consumers negotiate values, norms and practices associated with filial piety during new family formation. Building on the influential framework of layered family identity proposed by Epp and Price (2008), the authors seek to develop a framework which enables us to better understand how Asian consumers construct and enact their family identity through mundane consumption.

Design/methodology/approach

As most of the identity negotiation in the domestic sphere takes place within the mundanity of everyday life, such as during the routines, rituals and conventions of “ordinary” family meals, the authors adopted an interpretive, hermeneutic and longitudinal ethnographic research approach, which drew from a purposive sample of nine Sri Lankan couples.

Findings

The authors present the finding in three vivid narrative exemplars of new family identity negotiation and discuss three processes which informants negotiated the layered family identity. First, Asian families negotiate family identity by re-formulating aspects of their relational identity bundles. Second, re-negotiating facets of individual identity facilitates construction of family identity. Finally, re-configuring aspects of collective family identity, especially in relation to the extended family is important to family identity in this research context. The authors also propose filial piety as a fundamental construct of Asian family identity and highlight the importance of collective layer over individual and relational family identity layers.

Research limitations/implications

The aim of this paper is to develop a conceptual framework which deepens our understanding of identity negotiation and formation in a collectivistic Asian context. Even though exploring Sinhalese, Sri Lankan culture sheds light on understanding identity and consumption in other similar Asian cultures, such as Indian, Chinese and Korean; this paper does not suggest generalisability of findings to similar research contexts. On the contrary, the findings aim to present an in-depth discussion of how identities are challenged, negotiated and re-formulated during new family formation around specific consumption behaviours associated with filial piety in a collectivistic extended family.

Social implications

As this research explores tightly knit relationships in extended families and how these families negotiate values, norms and practices associated with filial piety, it enables us to understand the complex ways in which Asian families negotiate identity. The proposed framework could be useful to explore how changing social dynamics challenge the traditional sense of family in these collectivistic cultures and how they affect family happiness and well-being. Such insight is useful for public policymakers and social marketers when addressing family dissatisfaction–based social issues in Asia, such as increasing rates of suicide, divorce, child abuse, prostitution and sexually transmitted disease.

Originality/value

Little is known about the complex ways in which Asian family identities are negotiated in contrast to Western theoretical models on this topic. Particularly, we need to understand how fundamental aspects of Asian family identity, such as filial piety, are continuously re-negotiated, manifested and perpetuated during everyday life and how formulations of Asian family identity may be different from its predominantly Western conceptualisations. Therefore, the paper provides an adaptation to the current layered family identity model and proposes filial piety as a fundamental construct driving Asian family identity.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 22 November 2014

Prabash Edirisingha, Robert Aitken and Shelagh Ferguson

In this paper, we provide a practical example of how ethnographic insight is obtained in the field. In so doing, we demonstrate multiple ways in which ethnographic…

Abstract

Purpose

In this paper, we provide a practical example of how ethnographic insight is obtained in the field. In so doing, we demonstrate multiple ways in which ethnographic approaches can be adapted during on-going research processes to develop rich and multiple emic/etic perspectives.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is based upon the first author’s reflective experience of undertaking ethnographic field work. The discussion draws from a multi-method, longitudinal and adaptive ethnographic research design, which aimed to capture the process of new family identity formation in Sri Lanka.

Originality/value

Existing research gives us excellent insight into various methods used in contemporary ethnographic research and the kinds of insight generated by these methods. With few exceptions, these studies do not give significant insight into the specifics of the ethnographic research process and the adaption practice. Thus, we provide a practical example of how ethnographic insight is obtained in the research field.

Discussion/findings

Our discussion elaborates the ways in which we integrated multiple research methods such as participant observations, semi-structured in-depth interviews, informal sessions, Facebook interactions, adaptations of performative exercises and elicitation methods to overcome complexities in cultural, mundane and personal consumption meanings. We also discuss how closer friendships with informants emerged as a consequence of the ethnographic research adaption practice and how this influenced trust and confidence in researcher-informant relationship, presenting us with a privileged access to their everyday and personal lives.

Article
Publication date: 14 September 2015

Yuri Seo and Kim-Shyan Fam

In this editorial viewpoint for the special issue, the authors identify a need to deepen our understanding of the important role that Asian consumer culture plays in the…

1881

Abstract

Purpose

In this editorial viewpoint for the special issue, the authors identify a need to deepen our understanding of the important role that Asian consumer culture plays in the global marketplace of the twenty-first century.

Design/methodology/approach

This editorial article discusses the emergence of Asian consumer culture, offers an integrative summary of the special issue and develops several key directions for future research.

Findings

The authors observe that Asian consumer culture is not a coherent knowledge tradition that can be described merely as “collectivist” or “Confucianist” in nature. Rather, it is better understood as the confluence of cultural traditions that are characterized by inner differentiation and complexity, various transformations and mutual influences in the Asian region and beyond.

Research limitations/implications

Although Asia’s economic growth has received much recent attention, extant theory regarding Asian consumer culture is still in its infancy. The authors highlight important developments in this area that show the path for future work.

Originality/value

The authors make three contributions to the emerging scholarly interest in Asian consumer culture. First, the authors respond to recent calls to increase the use of qualitative methods in Asian contexts. Second, the authors draw attention to the cultural complexities and mutual influences that characterize contemporary Asian consumer cultures, and subcultures in the Asian region and beyond, through the selection of articles for this special issue. Finally, the authors draw the threads together to provide directions for future research in this area.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 22 November 2014

Abstract

Details

Consumer Culture Theory
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-158-9

Article
Publication date: 9 November 2015

Yuri Seo, Angela Gracia B. Cruz and Kim-Shyan Fam

– The purpose of this paper is to identify a need to incorporate Asian perspectives in theories of food consumption and marketing.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify a need to incorporate Asian perspectives in theories of food consumption and marketing.

Design/methodology/approach

This editorial discusses the mutually recursive relationship between food and culture in Asian markets, offers an integrative summary of the special issue and develops several key themes for future research.

Findings

Food consumption plays a central role within Asian cultures and markets. Thus, understanding Asian perspectives and contexts provides an important complement and contrast to current theories of food consumption and marketing that have been primarily sited in North American and European contexts. In particular, the complex multiplicity of Asian consumer cultures creates dynamic heterogeneity within Asian food markets.

Research limitations/implications

Although food consumption plays a central role in Asian consumer cultures, extant theory regarding Asian food consumption and marketing is still in its infancy. We highlight important developments in this area that suggest a path for future work.

Originality/value

The authors make three contributions to the literature on food consumption and marketing. First, while engaging with these questions, this issue points to the importance of Asian cultural perspectives into the marketing literature on food consumption. Second, through the articles of this special issue, we trace the relationships between food consumption practices, marketing practices and cultural multiplicity in Asian contexts. Finally, we draw the threads together to provide directions for future research in this area.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 32 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 18 January 2021

Benedetta Cappellini, Susanna Molander and Vicki Harman

Abstract

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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