Army Wives’ Consumer Vulnerability and Communities of Coping

Bruce, Helen and Banister, Emma Neva (2019) Army Wives’ Consumer Vulnerability and Communities of Coping. European Journal of Marketing. ISSN 0309-0566

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Abstract

Purpose The spouses or partners of serving members of the UK Armed Forces are often subject to similar constraints to those of enlisted personnel. This paper aims to examine the experiences and wellbeing of a group of army wives. In particular, it focuses on their shared experiences of consumer vulnerability and related challenges, exploring the extent to which membership of military wives’ communities can help them to cope. Design/methodology/approach Using an interpretivist approach, data were collected through four focus group discussions involving 30 army wives, and seven individual in-depth interviews. Findings The paper highlights shared experiences of consumer vulnerability and demonstrates how army wives’ approaches to coping incorporate both individual and community-based approaches. It proposes that communities of coping develop within the army wives community, providing women with both practical and emotional support. Research limitations/implications The paper acknowledges that there is a range of factors that will impact military spouses’ experiences of consumer vulnerability and strategies for coping. This heterogeneity was difficult to capture within a small exploratory study. Practical implications The UK Government should consider their duties towards military spouses and children. This would entail a significant cultural shift and recognition of military personnel’s caring responsibilities. Originality/value This research contributes to understandings regarding the potentially shared nature of both consumer vulnerability and coping strategies. The study introduces the relevance of communities of coping to consumer contexts, highlighting how members can benefit from both practical and emotional support.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
European Journal of Marketing
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1400/1406
Subjects:
ID Code:
139455
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
06 Dec 2019 14:55
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
30 Nov 2020 13:45