Laboratory of Consumer Studies at Faculty of Economics and Management
by Kamila Ondrasova
On 16 October, the Laboratory of Consumer Studies was officially opened at Faculty of Economics and Management. Creation of this laboratory is a part of the four-year project which aim is to forward the education and research in Slovakia in the area of business, marketing, management and economics with the use of the latest technologies.
The laboratory presents a simulated purchase space for a detailed study of the shopping process, buyers´ decision-making and training of practical retailing merchandising. It is an original concept realized by a group of experts and enthusiasts for innovative business research solutions under the guidance of Ing. Jakub Berčík, PhD., with the support of the Department of Marketing and Trade, management of FEM and SUA in Nitra, as well as partners and sponsors.
As the Dean of FEM, prof. Elena Horská, stated the lab will preferably serve as a learning workplace for students who will be able to test on themselves the impact of marketing and neuro-marketing on the customer. In the second phase, the faculty plans to extend the cooperation with the practice and the commercial sphere and, according to Dean's words, the project team has already acquired several significant national projects. Author of the concept, Jakub Berčík, said that the modern trend is to examine the consumer from a psychological point of view. "Economic studies demonstrating that buyers´ decision-making is mostly an emotional process, which is rationally justified only afterwards, will not be a solution to all of the problems in economics. However, in some cases, they can identify breakthroughs before significant costs are incurred, "said J. Berčík. In Slovak universities, the area of neuro-marketing is mostly at the level of theoretical knowledge, the research itself is rare. It is related to the financial demands of software, as well as to the ethical principles of research that is very sensitive topic.
Equipment of the Laboratory
The newly opened laboratory consists of a main and control room. The main room serves to carry out marketing, management and economics research using biometric and neuro-imaging devices (similar to those used for diagnostics in medicine). The main room consists of four parts - a simulated sales space for studying a detailed shopping process and a buyer decision-making process; a multifunction sensory table with implicit feedback retrieval for studying product perception, packaging, design, or used materials; a flavor box for examining the effects of fragrance perception and preferences of buyer; and ultimately the universal part for the research of ads, websites and online apps. Unlike other workplaces, the lab allows precise control of environmental factors (purchasing atmosphere) and aromatization that have a major impact on buyer decision making and thus allows a completely new concept of research approaches to the given topics from practice.
In order to build the laboratory, FEM was able to gain 100,000 euros by collective funding from 30 sponsors. In the second phase (from 2016 until now), the funding more than 900,000 euros has been covered by one VEGA project, KEGA project, two APVV projects, and from the coordination of two Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership projects.
Pravda: 18. 10., online
Roľnícke noviny: č 43, 24. októbra 2018, str. 3: Budú skúmať nákupné rozhodovanie
My Nitrianske noviny: roč. 27, 22. 10. 2018, str. 7: Na univerzite vedia, ako ovplyvniť naše rozhodovanie pri nakupovaní