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2017/2018  BA-BIMKV1701U  3C: Comprehending Consumers across Cultures

English Title
3C: Comprehending Consumers across Cultures

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Bachelor
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Autumn
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Max. participants 50
Study board
Study Board for BA in Intercultural Marketing Communication
Course coordinator
  • Alexander Josiassen - Department of Marketing (Marketing)
  • Fumiko Kano Glückstad - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
Main academic disciplines
  • Customer behaviour
  • Globalization and international business
  • Marketing
Last updated on 20-02-2017

Relevant links

Learning objectives
To achieve the grade 12, students should meet the following learning objectives with no or only minor mistakes or errors: Be able to formulate a research question integrating some of the key theoretical concepts introduced in the course
  • Be able to apply relevant research methods learned in the course
  • Understand the role of globalization to international consumers decision-making
  • Understand the role of values, acculturation, cosmopolitanism and related concepts to international consumers decision-making
  • Understand the role of country of origin effects to international consumers decision-making
  • Understand the role of consumer country biases to international consumers decision-making
  • Be able to detail how the international consumer behavior concepts and theories can be used to segment and target international markets
  • Develop branding and communication strategies targeting the selected segments
Course prerequisites
The course is open to a wide range of students who wish to learn how to investigate, understand, and manage international consumers and tourists.
3C: Comprehending Consumers across Cultures:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Winter
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Description of the exam procedure

The students are given a case, and formulate (a) research question(s) from problems and challenges identified from the case company. The students have to formulate their own research questions, selecting and applying theories introduced in the course, and critically analyze empirical data by employing theories and methods learned through the course. The students are welcome to use the materials from their group works and assignments made through the course.

Course content and structure

Consumers increasingly expect to be addressed and met on their own terms. This can only be achieved if businesses can handle very complex insights into culturally diverse subgroups (“segments”) of consumers and their behavior across the global market place. The key challenge is understanding and identifying how consumers prioritize and choose. The identity formation and thereby value formation of modern consumers are becoming increasingly complex due to their belonging to local, national and global communities accessible via contemporary media technologies and the world wide web. The influence of globalization is in particular prominent in non-Western markets (e.g. Eastern Asia) where modern Western values are mixed with traditional local values. In order to comprehend consumers across cultures, the course reviews definitions of cultures socio-cultural environments influencing the formation of consumers' identities, and discusses how culture, values and norms translate into consumer behavior.The course introduces several international consumer behavior concepts such as "Acculturation to Global Consumer Culture", "Local vs. Global Branding", "Consumer Segmentation", "Country of Origin Effects", CCB theory and Matrix, "Consumer Cosmopolitanism, Ethnocentrism, Affinity and Animosty", and "Relevance Theory of Communication".



For comprehending consumers across cultures, several research methods are introduced among others: explorative quantitative analysis of secondary data such as World Value Survey, European Social Survey, Eurobarometer; survey design for collecting primary data; content analysis of text-based digital media such as social media.   


The course focuses on identifying a target (consumer or market) segment for a specific case study and analyze how a company targets a specific segment and opptimizes its communication strategy to attract the targeted consumer segment.  



Teaching methods
The course consists of 3 lessons (3 x 45 minutes) for 12 weeks.

The course will mainly use lecturing, group discussions as learning remedies. The intention is to international groups consisting of a mix of local Danish students and international students, to facilitate discussions between students of diverse backgrounds.

The students can use materials worked on the group assignments to a final exam report.
Feedback during the teaching period
Through a group-based assignment, the course will facilitate "student to student feedback" as well as teachers' feedbacks to each group assignment in the class and online.
Student workload
Preparation (reading course materials) 72 hours
Exam (including exam preparation) 48 hours
Group work and assignments 50 hours
Lectures 36 hours
Expected literature

Literatures (indicative):

  • Albaum, G., Duerr, E. & Josiassen, A. (2016) International Marketing and Export Management 8 edition.

    Pearson ISBN-10: 1292016922 ISBN-13: 978-1292016924

  • Schmidt, B. (2013) The Changing Face of the Asian Consumer: Insights and Strategies for Asian Markets. McGraw Hill Higher Education

  • Josiassen, A. (2011). Consumer disidentification and its effects on domestic product purchases: An empirical investigation in the Netherlands. Journal of Marketing, 75(2), 124-140.

  • Cleveland, M., & Laroche, M. (2007). Acculturaton to the global consumer culture: Scale development and research paradigm. Journal of business research, 60(3), 249-259.


Literature (supplemental):


  • Cleveland, M. et al. (2011) Cosmopolitanism, individual-level values and cultural-level values: A cross-cultural study. In: Journal of Business Research 64, pp. 934-943
  • Markus, H.R. & S. Kitayama (1991) Culture and the self: Implication for cognition, emotion, and motivation. Psychological Review 98, 224-253.
  • Schwartz, S. H. (2012) An overview of the Schwartz theory of basic values, Online Readings in Psychology and Culture, 2(1). http:/​/​dx.doi.org/​10.9707/​2307-0919.1116
  • Klaus, K. (2013) Content analysis: An introduction to its methodology, Thousand Oaks, Calf. Sage
  • Bearden, W.O., Netemeyer, R.G., Haws, K.L. (2011) Handbook of Marketing Scales: Multi-Item Measures for Marketing and Consumer Behavior Research. Sage publications
  • Bethlehem, J. 2009. Survey Methodology: A statistical perspective. Wiley. Chapter 3.
Last updated on 20-02-2017