ABSTRACT

Consumption is the most important cultural keyword in the modern society. This study tried an exploratory comparison of consumer culture of Korea, USA and Sweden in response to the needs on cultural comparison research perspective. Triandis's cultural dimensions were adopted to explore each country's cultural characteristics. A qualitative in-depth interviews were conducted to consumers who lived both in Korea and USA, or in Korea and Sweden, which enabled them to get familiar with each country's consumer culture. The research found that the culture is projected to the consumer culture in a micro domain. The individualism allowed consumers in USA and Sweden to be unconscious of other's eyes. But collectivism in Korea made Korean consumers locked in other's judgement. In contrast, in a macro domain of consumer culture such as donation and pro-environmental consumption, consumption practices were in a dissonance with their cultural orientation, where includes interaction with society and environment. In addition, in a post-materialistic society, symbolism of consumption goods gets weakened and experiential consumption evolves with a transition from mass consumption society to plural culture society. Lastly, consumer culture functions as a creative mechanism of new culture by consumer's reflexive planning, which is one of the clues of an autonomous consumer culture. This study tried to explore the consumer culture of Korea, USA and Sweden as an exploratory trial for the comparison of consumer cultures. To increase empirical consumer culture study, refined questionnaire item pool is to be extracted through various exploratory researches, which can be utilized commonly in various cultures. Moreover, an additional research is in need about a consumer culture in a macro domain and experiential consumer culture in a post-materialism society.

KEYWORD

Intangibility, uncertainty, perceived risk, regret, satisfaction, needs for touch

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