Eric Arnould


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Artistic and research interests

Dr. Eric Arnould is Visiting Professor of Marketing at the Aalto University Business School. He briefly held a social science Chair in the Danish Institute for Advanced Studies (DIAS) at University of Southern Denmark. He has been on faculty at four European universities and several in the US. He has pursued a career in applied social science since 1973, receiving a PhD in anthropology from the University of Arizona in 1982. Aalto University awarded him an honorary doctorate in 2016 that recognized his work in codifying the field of consumer culture theory and in bringing ethnography work into academic marketing research. Early ethnographic research in Benin in 1970 and in Niger in 1977-1980 inspired his approach to contemporary market mediated society.


Professor Arnould’s research on consumer culture, cultural marketing strategy, services marketing and marketing and development appears in over 90 articles and chapters in major social science and managerial periodicals and books. He has helped legitimize post positivist inquiry in marketing scholarship and codify consumer culture Current interests include sustainable business practice both in east Africa and Europe, sustainable consumption, collective consumer creativity, human branding, visual representations, and digital mobility. He is at work on a collective text on consumer culture theory.


Professor Arnould has benefited from teaching students at all levels in universities on four continents and mentoring doctoral students in a variety of capacities. In addition to his current posts, he has been on faculty at EMLYON, Lyon, France, University of Bath (UK), University of Wyoming, University of Arizona, University of Nebraska, University of South Florida, California State University, Long Beach, and University of Colorado at Denver.  He has taught also at Université Dauphine, ESCP and HEC in Paris. He has been a regular contributor to the Canon of Classics, a PhD seminar offered at University of Southern Denmark, focusing on disseminating core social science theory to doctoral candidates in marketing


His consulting work has produced reports on electrical energy, dryland and irrigated agriculture, natural resources management, qualitative research methods, and luxury management. He has benefited from grants and consulting opportunities from a number of public and private sector entities, such as the Marketing Science Institute, the United States Department of Agriculture, the US Agency for International Development, the United Nations Environmental Program, and CARE among others.


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production


  • Marketing
  • Consumer Culture Theory
  • Sustainability
  • Strategy
  • Development
  • West Africa
  • agriculture
  • natural resources


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