New thesis on brand recall and construal level
On Tuesday 27 June 2023 Halldor Örn Engilbertsson will hold a trial lecture on a prescribed topic and defend his thesis for the PhD degree at NHH.
Consumers expect physical balance in most activities. But slippery surfaces, missed step, or navigating virtual environments can cause imbalance. What then?
This dissertation investigated the effect of physical imbalance on consumers. Engilbertsson hypothesized that a momentary loss of physical balance would impair consumers´ capacity to recall brands and their short-term perspective would be incited. This result was predicted based on previous research, which found physical imbalance to influence mental capacity. Moreover, when mental capacity is affected, construal level theory proposes that proximal interoceptive sensations can shift consumers´ focus away from future outcomes.
The candidate asked four research questions derived from the identified research gap. Four controlled experiments tested the cognitive response to physical imbalance among young and healthy participants. The results from the first study suggested that participants felt a reduction in mental performance. However, there was no evidence that physical imbalance impaired brand recall. Of the subsequent three construal level studies, one showed a small effect of lesser immediate rewards favored over larger distant rewards during imbalance. A mini meta-analysis of the studies suggested weak evidence for the proximal sensation of imbalance on psychological distance.
This dissertation is the first study in consumer psychology to test the effect of physical imbalance on young and healthy adults as a demanding sensory state. The finding broadens previous research about physical imbalance that mainly focused on cognitive performance among balance-impaired participants.
The study of imbalance remains important in consumer research due to an aging population and virtual reality applications. The dissertation demonstrates that measuring the effect of proximal sensation of imbalance requires technical proficiency and that further assessment of construal level measures is needed.
Prescribed topic for the trial lecture:
The Role of Construal Level Theory in Consumer Behavior Research: theoretical foundations, empirical support and applications
Jebsen Aud, NHH, 10:15
Title of the thesis:
The Imbalanced Consumer: The effect of physical imbalance on brand recall and construal level
Aud Jebsen, NHH, 12:15
Members of the evaluation committee:
Professor Helge Thorbjørnsen (leader of the committee), Department of Strategy and Management, NHH
Professor Nina Veflen, BI Norwegian Business School
Professor Magnus Söderlund, Stockholm School of Economics
Professor Professor Leif Egil Hem (main supervisor), Department of Strategy and Management, NHH
Professor Luk Warlop, BI Norwegian Business School
The trial lecture and thesis defense will be open to the public.