Professor James Cronin

Professor in Marketing and Consumer Culture Studies

Research Interests

I am a Professor in Consumer Culture Studies with the Department of Marketing at Lancaster University Management School and Director of the LUMS Centre for Consumption Insights. My principal research focuses on the social and cultural aspects of consumer behaviour including collective and symbolic forms of consumption, marketplace ideologies, consumer escapism, and the cultural politics of marketing. I am also interested in consumer health & well-being, food cultures, and the parasocial relationships that consumers forge with celebrity brands. Much of my current research activities focus on how social structures, ideologies, and interactions between people shape and ground their consumption experiences. To explore these areas, I have used a variety of qualitative research methods and theoretical formulations from philosophy, sociology, and cultural theory.

My work has appeared in international peer-reviewed journals including Sociology of Health & Illness, European Journal of Marketing, Marketing Theory, Journal of Marketing Management, Consumption, Markets & Culture, and Journal of Business Research. I co-edited a Special Issue for the Journal of Marketing Management entitled 'De-romanticising the market: advances in Consumer Culture Theory' (2022, Vol. 38 Iss 1-2) and am an Associate Editor for Consumption, Markets & Culture.

Presently, I am involved as a co-investigator on the UKRI NERC-funded 'Plastic Packaging in People's Lives' (PPiPL) interdisciplinary project. The PPiPL project seeks to produce a critical, nuanced, and comprehensive overview of the ideological, socio-cultural, historical, and industrial conditions, circular supply chain logistics, and post-consumer pathways that contribute to the perceived legitimacy of plastic packaging materials in the UK. I draw from philosophy and cultural theory to approach plastic as a "passengerial" marketplace icon that furtively accompanies consumers on their various experiential journeys. I am the lead author of The Little Book of Plastics in Everyday Life.

I regularly present my work at the Interpretive Consumer Research (ICR) Workshops and Consumer Culture Theory (CCT) conferences and won the Best Paper Award at the 2016 CCT conference in Lille, France.

Selected Publications

Four Corners of the Unsettling: The more-than-uncanniness of consumer culture
Cronin, J., James, S. 30/04/2024 In: Consumption, Markets and Culture.
Journal article

“If You Like Your History Horrible”:: The Obscene Supplementarity of Thanatourism
James, S., Cronin, J., Patterson, A. 1/05/2024 In: Annals of Tourism Research. 106
Journal article

Market mutton dressed as ÜberLamb: Diagnosing the commodification of self-overcoming
Cronin, J., Fitchett, J., Coffin, J. 5/10/2023 In: Marketing Theory.
Journal article

Revenants in the Marketplace: A Hauntology of Retrocorporation
James, S., Cronin, J., Patterson, A. 15/09/2023 In: Marketing Theory.
Journal article

Futureless Vicissitudes: Gestural Anti-consumption and the Reflexively Impotent (Anti-)Consumer
Hoang Ngoc , Q., Cronin, J., Skandalis, A. 31/12/2023 In: Marketing Theory. 23, 4, p. 585 - 606.
Journal article

Celebrity brand break-up: Fan experiences of para-loveshock
Jones, S., Cronin, J., Piacentini, M. 30/06/2022 In: Journal of Business Research. 145, p. 720-731. 12 p.
Journal article

High-fidelity consumption and the claustropolitan structure of feeling
Hoang, Q., Cronin, J., Skandalis, A. 1/03/2022 In: Marketing Theory. 22, 1, p. 85-104. 20 p.
Journal article

Plastic: a passengerial marketplace icon
Cronin, J., Hadley, C., Skandalis, A. 30/09/2022 In: Consumption, Markets and Culture. 25, 5, p. 485-497. 13 p.
Journal article

Consumer culture theory and its contented discontent: an interview with Søren Askegaard
Cronin, J., Fitchett, J. 31/01/2022 In: Journal of Marketing Management. 38, 1-2, p. 127-144. 18 p.
Journal article

De-romanticising the market: Advances in Consumer Culture Theory
Fitchett, J., Cronin, J. 31/03/2022 In: Journal of Marketing Management. 38, 1-2, 16 p.
Editorial

Lunch of the last human: Nutritionally complete food and the fantasies of market-based progress
Cronin, J., Fitchett, J. 1/03/2021 In: Marketing Theory. 21, 1, p. 3-24. 22 p.
Journal article

The Interrupted World: Surrealist disruption and altered escapes from reality
Jones, S., Cronin, J., Piacentini, M. 1/12/2020 In: Marketing Theory. 20, 4, p. 459-480. 22 p.
Journal article

Managing Collective Effervescence: 'Zomsumption’ and Postemotional Fandom
Cronin, J.M., Cocker, H.L. 1/09/2019 In: Marketing Theory. 19, 3, p. 281-299. 19 p.
Journal article

Bodysnatching in the marketplace: Market-focused health activism and compelling narratives of dys-appearance
Cronin, J.M., Hopkinson, G.C. 09/2018 In: Marketing Theory. 18, 3, p. 269-286. 17 p.
Journal article

Mapping the Extended Frontiers of Escapism: Binge-watching and Hyperdiegetic Exploration
Jones, S., Cronin, J.M., Piacentini, M.G. 6/08/2018 In: Journal of Marketing Management. 34, 5-6, p. 497-508. 12 p.
Journal article

Lifeway Alibis: The biographical bases for unruly bricolage
Cronin, J.M., Malone, S. 18/07/2018 In: Marketing Theory. 19, 2, p. 129-147. 19 p.
Journal article

Charismatic authority and the YouTuber: unpacking the new cults of personality
Cocker, H.L., Cronin, J.M. 1/12/2017 In: Marketing Theory. 17, 4, p. 455-472. 18 p.
Journal article

Deconstructing consumer discipline: how self-management is experienced in the marketplace
Cronin, J., McCarthy, M., Delaney, M. 1/11/2015 In: European Journal of Marketing. 49, 11-12, p. 1902-1922. 21 p.
Journal article

"When people take action ...": mainstreaming malcontent and the role of the celebrity institutional entrepreneur
Hopkinson, G., Cronin, J. 10/2015 In: Journal of Marketing Management. 31, 13-14, p. 1383-1402. 19 p.
Journal article

The bigger society: considering lived consumption experiences in managing social change around obesity
Cronin, J., McCarthy, M., Brennan, M., McCarthy, S. 2014 In: European Journal of Marketing. 48, 9/10, p. 1558-1778. 21 p.
Journal article

Creeping edgework: carnivalesque consumption and the social experience of health risk
Cronin, J., McCarthy, M., Collins, A. 11/2014 In: Sociology of Health and Illness. 36, 8, p. 1125-1140. 16 p.
Journal article

On the Political Economy of Single-use plastics: A transcendental materialist account
Invited talk

Thus also spoke the marketeer: Nietzsche and consumer culture
Invited talk

Thus also spoke the marketeers: Nietzsche & Consumer Culture
Invited talk

CCI Roundtable Session on The Cost of Living Crisis
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

CCI Roundtable Session on Social media’s Otherworldly Subcultures
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

CCI Roundtable Session on Halloween: History, Lore, & Consumption (2023)
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Interim Research Director, Marketing Department
Other

Panel Discussion: Packaging Today
Invited talk

UKSS International Conference 2023
Participation in conference - Academic

BPF Sustainability and Plastics 2023: Weighing social responses to the challenges of waste plastics
Invited talk

Advancing Plastic Waste Reduction in Agri-Food Supply Chains: A Stakeholder Perspective
Invited talk

Panel Discussion: Plastics Sustainability: myth busting and the human factor
Invited talk

Futures work at Lancaster University no.2: The little book of plastics in everyday life
Invited talk

CCI Roundtable Session on the Cost of Living Crisis
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

The future of recycling
Invited talk

Consumption, Markets and Culture (Journal)
Editorial activity

LUMS REF Working Group
Other

Last(ing) human(ism) at the end of ‘the End of History’ (Keynote address)
Invited talk

CCI Roundtable Session on Subcultures of TikTok
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

CCI Roundtable Session on Halloween: History, Lore, & Consumption (2022)
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Plastic Packaging in People’s Lives: Perspectives on the Consumer Attitude-Behaviour Gap
Oral presentation

Plastic Packaging in People’s Lives: Perspectives on the Consumer Attitude-Behaviour Gap
Invited talk

Plastic packaging in People's Lives (PPiPL): From farm to fork and beyond?
Invited talk

PPiPL: Valuing the afterlives of materials
Invited talk

Plastic Packaging in People’s Lives: Reflections on Engaged Academic Research
Invited talk

LUMS What Matters Now
Other

CCI Roundtable Session on Technoconsumption and Artificial Intelligence
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Morecambe Bay Curriculum
Oral presentation

Journal of Marketing Management (Journal)
Editorial activity

CCI Roundtable Session on Halloween: History, Lore, & Consumption
Public Lecture/ Debate/Seminar

Responsibility and Plastic Packaging: Exploring the issues for the packaging supply chain
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Standing Conference on Organizational Symbolism
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Doctoral Research Director, Marketing Department
Other

BSA Medical Sociology 50th Anniversary Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

13th Consumer Culture Theory Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Keynote Speaker: "Producing compelling & noteworthy work for International Conferences"
Invited talk

Somatising Consumer Subjectivity
Invited talk

Rolling Back the Civilising Process
Invited talk

Health, Risk and Society (Journal)
Publication peer-review

EIASM 9th Workshop on Interpretive Consumer Research
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Interpretive Consumer Research Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Between the Screen and the Plate: Engaging with the Narratives That TV Food Documentaries use to “move” Consumers
Invited talk

Consumer Culture Theory Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Macromarketing Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

11th Consumer Culture Theory Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Consumption, Markets and Culture (Journal)
Editorial activity

Sociology of Health and Illness (Journal)
Publication peer-review

8th Workshop on Interpretive Consumer Research
Participation in workshop, seminar, course

Interpretive Consumer Research Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Consumer Culture Theory Conference
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Consumer Culture Theory conference 2012
Participation in conference -Mixed Audience

Staff Awards: Highly Commended (Teaching)
Prize (including medals and awards)

LUMS Deans Awards: Teacher of the Year
Prize (including medals and awards)

Best Competitive Paper Award
Prize (including medals and awards)

  • Centre for Consumption Insights
  • Networks, Knowledge and Strategy