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Title: Understanding the ageing consumer : exploring strategies for overcoming innovation resistance
Author: Dietrich, Olaf
ISNI:       0000 0004 5917 3838
Awarding Body: University of Gloucestershire
Current Institution: University of Gloucestershire
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis deals with the trend of an ageing population in Germany and the opportunities and challenges that it presents for the consumer goods industry. The goal of the research is to provide a more nuanced understanding of ageing consumers and to suggest strategies to overcome innovation resistance. It departs from the traditional product-oriented research perspective and explores domestic practices of everyday life. Using this approach, it investigates the role of household appliances in facilitating the wish of older adults to age-in-place. Due to the interdisciplinary nature of the research, a synthetic framework was created that melds and extends distinct conceptual elements from separate theories. While previous studies have largely failed to provide a detailed description of user segments, this research applies a novel market segmentation approach that assists in developing more effective innovation strategies. It has extended the Use Diffusion model (Shih & Venkatesh, 2004) by creating a number of novel sub-determinants which direct household technology use in different directions. It posits that different user segments exhibit different levels of interest in future technology acquisition. Based on an advanced understanding of use patterns, the research intends to clarify a possible application of disruptive innovations, which suggest simpler, more familiar and affordable products and services. The research followed a sequential approach to data generation. It begins with interviews conducted during home visits using the task of ‘doing the laundry’ as a focal practice, interviews with care workers, and medical practitioners. It is supplemented with focus groups comprised of the intended product users in order to generate innovation ideas. A final focus group of industry experts followed and centred on the operationalization of those ideas within an established company. Finally, the thesis developed a synthetic model to support innovation management that is not present in current conceptions.
Supervisor: Kaufmann, Rüdiger ; Lentz, Patrick Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.B.A.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD60 Social responsibility in business ; HF5387 Business Ethics ; HF5428 Retail Trade