Scottish café society: contemporary consumption issues and lifestyle identities

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Purpose:The purpose of this research is to provide a qualitative insight into contemporary issues of consumption and associated lifestyle identities within the branded coffee house sector in Scotland.
    Design/methodology/approach: Based on summary case findings, the ethno-methodological approach has provided a consumer-based focus via the use of narratives which have helped to build pictures on routing aspects of this social phenomenon for analysis.
    Findings: The study highlighted a number of emergent isssues and patterns pertinent to this popular sector as it inflitrates Scottish society. The addictive mix of quality products, sophisticated packaging, high levels of personal service with added social and environmental scruples have led to phenomenal growth in the postmodern Scottish urban landscape. Scottish consumers have become daily devotees to the designer cup with 83 per cent claiming that this type of consumption is fuelled by lifestyle considerations.
    Research limitations/implications - Fieldwork was facilitated by nominated access in four branded operations across four Scottish cities. Controlled conditions were employed to facilitate generalisation with further research desirable over wider timeframe to allow evaluation of potential relationships between gender, geography and usage patterns.
    Practical implications: Implications for the ubiquitous Scottish public house are clear in that there is evidence of competition wit the branded coffee sector in terms of share of discretionary leisure spend. This, coupled with the apparently increasing feminisation of social space with its preference for clean, healthy and positive lifestyle choices as opposed to the negative, predominantly male dominance of Scottish pub culture, indicates potential decline and further gender segregation at a time when companies are trying to involve the family more in the public house market.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)60-68
    Number of pages9
    JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2006


    • coffee culture
    • consumption
    • lifestyle
    • hospitality services
    • cafe society


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