Events Calendar

The Psychological Entitlement of (Dis)Advantaged Consumers

Friday, November 25, 2022
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Kresge Building (KB)
Room: 103

The Psychological Entitlement Of (Dis)Advantaged Consumers

Alice Wang,
Henry B. Tippie Research Fellow and Professor of Marketing,
University of Iowa

November 25,
10:30am-12:00 noon,
Kresge Building 103

Inequality continues to worsen and impact the daily lives of consumers, further widening the gap between the advantaged and disadvantaged. The present work makes important strides in examining how inequality impacts the psychology of consumers. Through six studies, including an analysis of consumer panel data and five experiments, we find that feeling disadvantaged leads consumers to engage in more satisficing consumption behaviors (being content with products that are “good enough” versus wanting the “very best”). We also show that this relationship is mediated by feelings of psychological entitlement: those who feel disadvantaged feel lower psychological entitlement than those who feel advantaged, which impacts satisficing tendencies in consumption decisions. Furthermore, we demonstrate that this relationship is moderated when status feels unjustified (versus justified). While consumers are generally motivated to justify current social standings and arrangements, when they instead feel that their status is unjustified, the gap in feelings of entitlement, and subsequent satisficing behaviors, is attenuated. The present work offers novel theoretical and managerial insights into how inequality impacts the psychology and well-being of disadvantaged consumers.

Presented by the DAN Department of Management & Organizational Studies

DAN Department of Management & Organizational Studies
DAN Department of Management & Organizational Studies
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