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Title: The low-income consumer in Greater Reading : an analysis of constrained food shopping behaviour.
Author: Opacic, Sofija.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3459 4087
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 1987
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This thesis is set within the general context of retailing geography. It discusses the salient structural and locational changes that have occurred within the post-war urban retailing environment, and attempts to assess their impact on the inner-city low-income consumer. The first part provides a review of the major findings of past studies of post-war retail change and consumer behaviour, and illustrates that a major deficiency of this literature is the tendency to briefly introduce, but inadequately consider, the implications of recent retail change on the low-income consumer. The essential problem which is addressed in the second part of the thesis is to assess the extent to which post-war retail change has affected the quantity and quality of inner-city shopping opportunities within the chosen study area, Greater Reading. This assessment is largely based on information obtained from surveys conducted by the author, namely a general retail inventory and detailed quality and price surveys. A comprehensive up-to-date description of the inner-city low-income consumer's food shopping behaviour does not exist within the present geographical literature. Accordingly, the third section specifically aims to provide a detailed description of this group's food shopping behaviour at a time of rapid retail change. A repertory grid survey was completed to identify the factors of importance to the low-income consumer, and these formed the focus of a major survey of consumer behaviour. The results of this research highlight both a number of salient similarities and differences amongst the low-income consumer population. The importance of ethnic status and age on the spatial and non-spatial aspects of food shopping behaviour are clearly evidenced. It is argued that such contrasts have major implications for the future planning of inner-city retailing opportunities. In the final part, positive directives for the planning of future inner-city food shopping facilities are discussed, which should help improve the low-income consumer's access to high quality opportunities. This is achieved by the reintroduction of relevant results obtained from the empirical research, and a detailed analysis of the present retail planning process via secondary sources of information including government policy notes and documents, structure plans and local newspapers.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Economics & economic theory