Handbook of Developments in Consumer Behaviour
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Handbook of Developments in Consumer Behaviour

Edited by Victoria Wells and Gordon Foxall

Consumer research incorporates perspectives from a spectrum of long-established sciences: psychology, economics and sociology. This Handbook strives to include this multitude of sources of thought, adding geography, neuroscience, ethics and behavioural ecology to this list. Encompassing scholars with a passion for researching consumers, this Handbook highlights important developments in consumer behaviour research, including consumer culture, impulsivity and compulsiveness, ethics and behavioural ecology. It examines evolutionary and neuroscience perspectives as well as consumer choice.
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Chapter 11: A Template Matching Technique of Personality Classification for the Study of Consumer Behavior: Case Study of Lois the Compulsive Buyer

Paul J. Albanese


Paul J. Albanese 11.1 INTRODUCTION The results are presented for a template matching technique of personality classification based on the California Adult Q Set that can be used for the study of consumer behavior, and an application is made to a case study of the personality organization of a compulsive buyer. Quantitative approaches to personality have been mired in individual difference or trait measures that treat people as parts and present a limited view of the person. The big five factor model of personality is an improvement in that it provides scores on an aggregation of five traits, but it does not identify the person’s personality in the terms meaningful to a clinician, and therefore does not connect to the vast clinical literature rich with detailed observations of consumer behavior. The development of the California Adult Q Set was led by Jack Block between 1952 and 1957 (Block 1961). Block (1961) described the California Q Set as a language instrument which permits the comprehensive description of an individual’s personality in a form suitable for quantitative comparison and analysis. The California Q Set consists of 100 cards containing descriptive statements that are sorted into 9 categories from extremely characteristic (9) to extremely uncharacteristic (1) with a fixed number of cards in each category forming a forced symmetric distribution with a mean of 5 and a standard deviation of 2.089 (Block 1961). When a sort is done on a person, ‘the subject is described as he appears and is understood by the...

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