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2019/2020  KAN-CIBMO1001U  Consumer Culture and Communication

English Title
Consumer Culture and Communication

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for Master of Arts (MA) in International Business Communication in English
Course coordinator
  • Alex Klinge - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
  • Ana Alacovska - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
Main academic disciplines
  • Globalisation and international business
  • Intercultural studies
  • Communication
Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face teaching
Last updated on 13-02-2019

Relevant links

Learning objectives
  • formulate independently a research question chosen freely from the topics of the course, which syllabus should delimit and guide the research projects in an unambiguous way.
  • analyze the processes and dynamics of consumer cultures and account for their impact on branding and market communication strategies.
  • critically reflect on and explain the content and relevance of the theories and methods used to answer the research question.
  • critically evaluate and argue for the validity of the empirical data used in the project.
Consumer Culture and Communication:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Home assignment - written product
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Size of written product Max. 10 pages
A take-home assignment that asks students to independently choose, research and critically analyse a case clearly belonging to the consumer culture theory spectrum. Max. 10 pages.
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
At the retake the student must hand in a new product.
Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

The aim of the course is to provide students with knowledge and insight into theories and methodologies of consumer culture and communication in order to enable them to conduct consumer culture research independently and rigorously.


The course offers an overview of the history of the discipline, its central perspectives and their background in other social sciences such as psychology, media and cultural studies, economy, sociology and anthropology.  


The course addresses the dynamic relationship between consumer objects and cultural scripts, meaning, and human action. It focuses on the experiential, mediated, symbolic, and lived socio-culturally negotiated dimensions of consumption in context (in specific socio-cultural and socio-economic circumstances and situated geographies) for the purpose of understanding and garnering insight into consumers’ life-worlds, their identity formation and consuming practices. The course aims at elucidating how the insights generated through consumer culture research inform and shape communication, marketing and branding strategies, as well as how they play into innovation and design processes, and organizational research and development (R&D) decision-making.




Description of the teaching methods
Classes on the empirical methods used to analyze consumers and consumption and to evaluate consumer behavior research.
Feedback during the teaching period
Student workload
Preparation and Lectures 156 hours
Exam 50 hours
Expected literature

Key readings (among others)

Lipovetsky Gilles (2010) The Hyperconsumption Society. Chapter 2 in Karin M. Ekström, Kay Glans (eds.) ‘Beyond the consumption bubble’. pp. 25-36.

Russel W Belk (1988) Possessions and the extended self. The Journal of Consumer Research 15(2): 139-168

Warde Allan (2005) Consumption and theories of practice. Journal of Consumer Culture 5(2): 131-153.

Zwick, Detlev, Bonsu K. Samuel and Darmody, Aron (2008) Putting Consumers to Work: ‘Co-creation’ and new marketing govern-mentality. The Journal of Consumer Research 8(2): 163-196.


Last updated on 13-02-2019