Consumer Culture, Technology and Sustainable Design – Essay Questions
Please read the following questions carefully. Choose one question to answer, and in your essay make
sure you use one example or case as evidence to support your argument.
1. What does ‘luxury’ mean, and what is the ‘democratization of luxury’?
2. What role has imitation played in the development of design?
3. Are some forms of mass-consumption more or less ‘compulsory?’ Why?
4. Why do we seem to need so many things? To what extent, and how, can possessions ‘extend’ the self?
5. How can marketing and advertising make us feel we ‘lack’ something?
6. What is ‘time scarcity’, and how does this seem to both increase, and be increased by, consumerism?
7. What role, negative or positive, does the media have in shaping our attitudes towards ‘nature’?
8. How can our values and goals shape our behaviour in consumption? Can these be changed?
9. What leverage points can we find to change larger urban systems towards greater sustainability?
10. What is meant by the Circular Economy? Can today’s ‘linear economy’ of ‘make, use and waste’ be. Consumer Culture, Technology and Sustainable Design.
modified through changes in consumption, or only through changes in systems of production?
Consumer Culture, Technology and Sustainable Design
QUESTION: HOW CAN MARKETING AND ADVERTISING MAKE US FEEL WE ‘LACK’ SOMETHING?
Companies spend a large proportion of their revenue in personalising and tailoring their marketing and advertising messages as well as trying to discover new strategies to encourage consumers’ repeated consumption. One of these strategies is advertising and companies use advertising to drive through compulsive buying. Following high competition in the market, each company wants to increase its competitiveness by increasing brand awareness and popularity in the market. Advertising helps in creating a picture of a brand in the minds of customers as well as informing customers of a brand in the market. However, companies have gone a notch higher to create a need in the psychology and cognition of customers that drive them to purchasing the advertised product or service. According to Braun-LaTour, LaTour, Pickrell and Loftus (2004), consumers trust their experiences when making purchasing decisions yet they have the possibility for pliability and manipulation. As such advertisers are interested in how they can transform the consumer experience by setting expectations and desires that influence the way customers and consumers view their needs and desires as well as the way they attend to information provided…….
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