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Sundström, M., Lundberg, C. & Ziakas, V. (2022). Unlocking chaotic lock-ins: Swedish retail chains’ changed strategies and operations in the wake ofthe pandemic. In: : . Paper presented at The 8th Nordic Retail and Wholesale Conference (NRWC) Tampere, Finland on the 8th – 10th November 2022.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Unlocking chaotic lock-ins: Swedish retail chains’ changed strategies and operations in the wake ofthe pandemic
2022 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The 2020’s will probably be remembered in history as a “crisis decade” and industries such as the retail sector have been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic is a crisis that has differed from previous crises caused by for example economic factors, as it is much more complex, is characterized by an increased volatility and unpredictability. This, triggering a restructuring of the economy and retail sector. Even before the pandemic, retailers’ strategies and operations were changing due to digitalization (Hagberg, Sundström & Egels-Zandén, 2016) and increasing competition from pure e-commerce players. In the wake of the pandemic, there has been signs that the Swedish retailers facing the greatest challenges have been store chains. However, the challenges have differed depending on their product offering. In this study we address the following research questions: 1) Which opportunities have emerged in the wake of the pandemic for retail chain operations? and 2) Which mistakes from the past have been brought to light in the wake of the pandemic and how are retail chains addressing them?

The aim of the paper is to investigate how retail chains have responded to change, adapted to new conditions, and recovered in the wake of the pandemic. In doing so, it identifies the principal lock-ineffects1 and how they have been replaced with new strategies and operations. In this context, the pandemic crisis is viewed as a turning point, which while it increases ambiguity and volatility also provides opportunities for creativity and innovation by reconfiguring the strategies and operations of retailers.

Methodologically we present retail chains’ recovery strategies and operations from the perspective of before and after the pandemic, identifying lock-in effects and how such effects have been released in the wake of the pandemic. In this presentation, we analyze empirical data from seven Swedish retail chains in fashion/sport, DIY, furnishing, and electronic devices using in-depth interviews with 12 senior managers at the highest level of each company. The study is unique in that the empirical data consists of five in-depth interviews with each respondent (60 interviews), performed between January 2022 – September 2022. Each interview runs between 60-90 minutes, is recorded audio/visual, transcripted and analyzed, rendering very rich and in-depth empirical data.

The authors use chaos and resilience as theoretical framework. The concept of resilience generally means the capacity to recover swiftly from difficulties or adverse conditions. There is a great amount of literature available on building a resilient organization. Such an organization can withstand changes in its environment and still function either without having to adjust or adapting to new conditions in a manner that better suits the new environmental conditions (McCarthy, Collard & Johnson, 2017). Chaos theory is suitable to examine the dynamic and nonlinear unfolding of how order emerges from a crisis (Lewin, 1999; Speakman & Sharpley, 2012; Thiétart & Forgues, 1995; Waldrop, 1992). This perspective is critical to 1 Inherited innovations in the past that had a lasting effect, even though occurred changes in the conditions may have made the initial response redundant. disentangle the complexity of crises for the retail sector characterized by the interaction of multiple factors, the effects of which are not easy to predict. This can help us to better understand how retail managers respond to the ambiguity and volatility of a crisis affecting the juncture of the retail sector with allied systems and structures (e.g., supply chain, urban structure, etc.). From this standpoint, retailing can be seen as a complex adaptive system of interactions, exchanges, and relationships. These interchanges make up a chaordic system: that is a complex adaptive system of dynamic connections between elements that form a unified whole, whose behavior is simultaneously unpredictable (chaotic) and orderly (Olmedo & Mateos, 2015). A crisis increases complexity and volatility by causing turbulence to the retail environment, until ‘self-organization’ takes place with order re-emerging out of a random phase (Boukas & Ziakas, 2014). From a resilience-building standpoint, by viewing retail chains as chaordic adaptive systems, we can comprehensively examine and better understand how such entities react during crisis.

Preliminary findings indicate different recovery strategies and changed operations related to the specific retail field that the chains operate in but also depending on existing working-from-home practice and whether fixed store settings are owned or rented. Furthermore, the study brings insights into how selforganization took place regarding business operations. The study contributes to the retailing field by bringing light to how stakeholders adapt to change and self-organize recovery strategies for greater resilience. Recovery management is in this light, a balancing act between adaptation to change and stability.

References

Boukas, N., & Ziakas, V. (2014). A chaos theory perspective of destination crisis and sustainable tourism development in islands: The case of Cyprus. Tourism Planning and Development, 11(2), 191-209.

Hagberg, J., Sundström, M., & Egels-Zandén, N. (2016). The digitalization of retailing: an exploratory framework. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 44(7), 694-712.

Lewin, R. (1999). Complexity: Life at the edge of Chaos (2nd ed.). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.

McCarthy, I., Collard, M., & Johnson, M. (2017). Adaptive organizational resilience: An evolutionary perspective. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 28, 33-40.

Olmedo, E., & Mateos, R. (2015). Quantitative characterization of chaordic tourist destination. Tourism Management, 47, 115-126.

Speakman, M., & Sharpley, R. (2012). A chaos theory perspective on destination crisis management: Evidence from Mexico. Journal of Destination Marketing and Management, 1(1–2), 67-77.

Thiétart, R. A., & Forgues, B. (1995). Chaos theory and organisation. Organization Science, 6(1), 19–31. Waldrop, M. (1992). Complexity: The emerging science at the edge of order and Chaos. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.

Keywords
Retail transformation, retail strategy, Covid-19, locked-in effects, retail chains
National Category
Economics and Business
Research subject
Urban studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-56217 (URN)
Conference
The 8th Nordic Retail and Wholesale Conference (NRWC) Tampere, Finland on the 8th – 10th November 2022
Funder
Swedish Retail and Wholesale Development Council
Available from: 2022-11-25 Created: 2022-11-25 Last updated: 2023-10-05Bibliographically approved
Sundström, M., Alm, K. H., Larsson, N. & Dahlin, O. (2021). B2B social media content: engagement on LinkedIn. Journal of business & industrial marketing, 36(3)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>B2B social media content: engagement on LinkedIn
2021 (English)In: Journal of business & industrial marketing, ISSN 0885-8624, E-ISSN 2052-1189, Vol. 36, no 3Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – This paper aims to identify content strategies on social media that influence engagement and to analyze those operations to describe important features for co-creation and trust.

Design/methodology/approach – This paper addresses the question of how social media content can influence engagement by using a mediumsized Swedish company for an empirical case study. This empirical study is based on a participatory action research methodology. By using the company account on LinkedIn, the authors experimented with relational content to understand the effects on customer-perceived value and trust.

Findings – Results reveal that action-oriented messages had a more significant impact on engagement than product-oriented messages and valuebased messages.

Originality/value – This paper builds on the existing literature in two ways: drawing upon business-to-business relationships and perceived value and using recent advances in the use of social networking sites to understand the value of co-creation through a participatory culture.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2021
Keywords
social networking sites, LinkedIn, engagement, business-to-business (B2B) relationships, perceived value, co-creation, co-design, trust
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Urban studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-18522 (URN)10.1108/JBIM-02-2020-0078 (DOI)
Available from: 2020-10-07 Created: 2020-10-07 Last updated: 2021-03-24Bibliographically approved
Sundström, M., Lundberg, C. & Ziakas, V. (2021). Episodic Retail Settings: A Sustainable and Adaptive Strategy for City Centre Stores. Sustainability, 13(5)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Episodic Retail Settings: A Sustainable and Adaptive Strategy for City Centre Stores
2021 (English)In: Sustainability, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 13, no 5Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The fact that an already damaged retail industry is being challenged by a pandemic makes the industry’s survival a matter of urban resilience. Sustainable and adaptive strategies are needed to reverse the negative development of the retail sector, and in this conceptual paper, a new perspective is suggested based on episodic retail settings. Such a perspective can increase a physical store’s attraction and may serve as a flexible operation strategy for urban retailers and give added value to urban consumers as they shape an ongoing dramatological discourse and facilitate social interaction in a way that traditional fixed-store formats are unable to compete with. By applying the scientific circle of enquiry (SCE), the authors develop an interdisciplinary perspective cutting across the sustainability, service science, and urban studies fields. On this ground, they present a set of conceptual premises and a tripartite conceptual framework delineating how to effectively design episodic retail settings that are adaptive and sustainable. The paper concludes with suggestions for research questions to further advance this field of study.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Basel: MDPI, 2021
Keywords
retail, sustainability, servicescape design, dramaturgy, sociality, co-creation, urban resilience
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-40882 (URN)10.3390/su13052482 (DOI)000628596300001 ()2-s2.0-85102307028 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2021-02-25 Created: 2021-02-25 Last updated: 2023-10-16Bibliographically approved
Sundström, M. (2021). Handel, postorder, e-handel och ett förändrat Borås. In: Anngerd Lönn (Ed.), Fässingen: Från Borås och de sju häraderna: Borås 400 år - från knalle till e-handel (pp. 51-72). Borås: De sju häradernas kulturhistoriska förening
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Handel, postorder, e-handel och ett förändrat Borås
2021 (Swedish)In: Fässingen: Från Borås och de sju häraderna: Borås 400 år - från knalle till e-handel / [ed] Anngerd Lönn, Borås: De sju häradernas kulturhistoriska förening , 2021, p. 51-72Chapter in book (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
Abstract [sv]

I det här kapitlet beskrivs utvecklingen från postorder till e-handel. Läsaren bjuds på en resa som startar med den viktiga branschroll som postordern hade och hur ett viktigt näringslivskluster bestående av e-handel, logistik, webbutveckling, utbildningsorganisationer och Borås Stad bidragit till att man i dag pratar om Borås och handel - fast på ett annat sätt. I slutet av kapitlet beskrivs den ökade e-handelns konsekvenser för Borås centrums organisering och uppkomsten av nya handelsformat som t.ex. showrooms och pop-up-butiker. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Borås: De sju häradernas kulturhistoriska förening, 2021
Series
Från Borås och de sju häraderna, ISSN 0347-2477 ; 57
Keywords
e-handel, postorder, Borås, framtidens handel
National Category
Social Sciences Economics and Business Business Administration
Research subject
Urban studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-47182 (URN)
Available from: 2021-12-05 Created: 2021-12-05 Last updated: 2021-12-14Bibliographically approved
Boström, M. & Sundström, M. (2021). Lojalitet på riktigt (1ed.). Lund: Studentlitteratur AB
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Lojalitet på riktigt
2021 (Swedish)Book (Other academic)
Abstract [sv]

På olika plan i samhället diskuteras lojalitet och man är överens om att lojalitet är viktigt för människor och för olika typer av verksamheter. Men vad är lojalitet? Och hur uppstår lojalitet hos människan? Hur kan verksamheter främja lojalitet?

Denna bok reder ut begreppet lojalitet och placerar in det i ett större sammanhang. Boken bidrar till en djupare insikt om vad lojalitet innebär och manar läsaren till att reflektera över begreppet och över vad som egentligen är lojalitetsfrämjande. Läsaren får också konkret hjälp att förstå hur lojalitet kan främjas, utvärderas och mätas i den egna verksamheten.

"Under tiden jag läste den här boken gick det fullständigt klart upp för mig vilken okunskap jag haft om lojalitetsbegreppet. Malin och Margareta ger mig alla nycklar till vad lojalitet betyder och hur det fungerar, kort sagt de reder ut begreppen och ger många och handfasta guider till hur verksamheter kan ge förutsättningar för lojalitet."

Arne B. Andersson, e-handels- och logistikexpert, "Arnepåposten", tidigare Postnord AB

"Med stort engagemang och en stark vilja att låta läsaren få en djupare förståelse för begreppet lojalitet, har Margareta och Malin skrivit en inspirerande och engagerande bok som alla borde ta sig tid att läsa. Boken låter dig fundera och ifrågasätta samtidigt som den ger dig verktyg för att kunna förstå begreppet lojalitet bättre."

Joachim Frykberg, vd Jula Holding AB och Jula AB 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Lund: Studentlitteratur AB, 2021. p. 200 Edition: 1
Keywords
lojalitet, lojalitet i verksamheter, lojalitetsbegrepp
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-48327 (URN)9789144135052 (ISBN)
Available from: 2021-12-22 Created: 2021-12-22 Last updated: 2021-12-27Bibliographically approved
Borgström, B. & Sundström, M. (2021). Smart Consumer-Oriented Urban Logistics. In: : . Paper presented at THE 49TH EUROPEAN TRANSPORT CONFERENCE: Programme committee Freight and Logistics.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Smart Consumer-Oriented Urban Logistics
2021 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Service innovation is the nexus between the growing e-commerce in urban areas and the ongoing Corona pandemic and seasonal peaks like Christmas. The growing market of urban e-commerce logistics needs solution-driven freight and urban logistics, which is an assumption of this study. Consumer-oriented urban logistics services enable consumers in their everyday and enable a well-functioning urban logistics market are a co-operation between consumers and urban service providers. A service-logic perspective may offer service innovation and value co-creation for the urban logistics challenge that includes last mile logistics.

This conceptual paper aims to develop strategic logistics service provision literature and service innovation literature to facilitate collaborative development between consumers and service providers. Central aspects are consumer's everyday routines and available solutions in terms of urban deliveries and returns, available interaction points between consumers and service providers in daily practices, and knowledge and resources of urban service provider (related to e-commerce logistics) for innovative offerings. 

The everyday consumption practice and its logistics are key in co-created service innovations. In-depth understanding of consumption practices and production practices is the basis to align resources for a differentiated urban logistics solution. Such a process develops both urban service consumption practices and production practices. Urban service providers like logistics firms, commercial real estaters, and e-retailers have complementary types of competencies to facilitate urban service innovation. 

The study will generate implications to the urban e-commerce logistics research area and benefit both academia and business. 

Keywords
Strategic, Urban, business, service innovation
National Category
Economics and Business Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-45860 (URN)
Conference
THE 49TH EUROPEAN TRANSPORT CONFERENCE: Programme committee Freight and Logistics
Available from: 2021-09-14 Created: 2021-09-14 Last updated: 2021-09-16Bibliographically approved
Jain, S. & Sundström, M. (2021). Toward a conceptualization of personalized services in apparel e-commerce fulfillment. Research Journal of Textile and Apparel, 25(4)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Toward a conceptualization of personalized services in apparel e-commerce fulfillment
2021 (English)In: Research Journal of Textile and Apparel, ISSN 1560-6074, Vol. 25, no 4Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – Today, customers’ perceived value does not only depend on the products, but also on the services provided by a firm. In e-commerce, it is important to shift the focus beyond the product and discuss the value of personalized services in the context of e-commerce fulfillment. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is twofold: to develop a conceptual framework proposing satisfaction through personalized services as a middle-range theory; and to suggest foundational premises supporting the theoretical framework, which in turn shape middle-range theory within the context of apparel e-commerce fulfillment.

Design/methodology/approach – In this theory-driven paper, the authors apply the scientific circle of enquiry, as it demonstrates the role of theorizing with the help of middle-range theory and empirical evidence and as such provides a methodological scaffolding that connects theory formulation and verification. The authors synthesize literature related to customer perceived value (CPV) and satisfaction, followed by abduction focusing on understanding the empirical domain as it occurred in practice from company cases. The presented case studies are based on semi-structured interviews with three Swedish online retailers within the apparel industry. The theory-driven analysis results in suggestions of foundational premises.

Findings – Based on the theoretical foundations and empirical generalizations, three propositions are suggested. The premises regarding satisfaction through personalized service applied in the domain of apparel e-commerce fulfillment are: to ensure customer satisfaction requires a value co-creation perspective using data during the pre-purchase phase; to ensure customer satisfaction and retention require added-value perspective during the post-purchase phase of the shopping journey, and to ensure satisfaction and convenience require an added-value perspective at the last mile.

Practical implications – The apparel firms lose a substantial amount of revenue because of poor online customer satisfaction, leading to e-commerce not reaching its full potential. To enhance customer value, online retailers need to find a resort in advanced technologies and analytics to address customer satisfaction, and it is suggested that retailers shift their focus beyond the products and find ways to improve personalized service offerings to gain market advantage, improve fulfillment, drive sales and increase CPV.

Originality/value – To consider personalized services as a source for improving e-commerce fulfillment and CPV, the main contribution of this study is conceptual as it presents a theoretical model developed from general theory, middle-range theory and verified with empirical claims.

Keywords Customer satisfaction, Apparel industry, Customer perceived value, E-commerce fulfillment, Personalized services Paper type Research paper

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2021
Keywords
Customer satisfaction, Apparel industry, Customer perceived value, E-commerce fulfillment, Personalized services
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Urban studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-43050 (URN)10.1108/RJTA-06-2020-0066 (DOI)000660515900001 ()
Available from: 2021-06-09 Created: 2021-06-09 Last updated: 2023-02-08Bibliographically approved
Li, S., Wen, (. T., Lundberg, C., Gkritzali, A. & Sundström, M. (2021). Two Tales of One City: Fantasy Proneness, Authenticity, and Loyalty of On-Screen Tourism Destinations. Journal of Travel Research, 60(8), 1802-1820
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Two Tales of One City: Fantasy Proneness, Authenticity, and Loyalty of On-Screen Tourism Destinations
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2021 (English)In: Journal of Travel Research, ISSN 0047-2875, E-ISSN 1552-6763, Vol. 60, no 8, p. 1802-1820Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

On-screen tourism destinations provide tourists with a mixture of reality and mass-media experience. This study builds a conceptual framework of authenticity evaluating the relationship between fantasy proneness, authenticity, and destination loyalty. It is among the first to compare perceived authenticity of dual images of a destination, both the film location and the story’s setting. Using Game of Thrones and the city of Dubrovnik as a case, it applies a mixed method of interviews followed by a main survey with both closed- and open-ended questions. The primary findings show that the relationship between authenticity of the film location (Dubrovnik) and loyalty is positive, but such relationship is insignificant for the authenticity of the story’s setting (King’s Landing). This investigation enriches our understanding of the complex assessments of authenticity and expands the theory of imagination by evaluating the effects of fantasy proneness on perceived authenticity in the context of on-screen tourism.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2021
Keywords
authenticity, fantasy proneness, on-screen tourism, heritage site
National Category
Business Administration
Research subject
Urban studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-18603 (URN)10.1177/0047287520961179 (DOI)
Available from: 2020-10-11 Created: 2020-10-11 Last updated: 2021-10-21Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0003-2219-1525

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