Author Archives: Leigh Sparks

About Leigh Sparks

I am Professor of Retail Studies at the Institute for Retail Studies, University of Stirling, where I research and teach aspects of retailing and retail supply chains, alongside various colleagues.

Analysing and Understanding Shopping Centres

One of the good things about being a Professor of Retail Studies is that you get to meet interesting people with interesting ideas.  Over the last year or so I have been involved on some executive education with Bayfield Training … Continue reading

Posted in Bayfield, Brands, Data, Department Stores, Food Court, Inter-depenendencies, Property, Relationships, Retail Quilts, Retailers, Shopping Centres | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

So you think you know Scottish Towns?

Almost two years ago, Scotland’s Towns Partnership launched Understanding Scottish Places (USP) – a data platform to provide for the very first time consistent and comparable data on 479 Scottish Towns.  At a time when funding is tight, there was … Continue reading

Posted in Carnegie UK Trust, Data, Institute for Retail Studies, Local Authorities, Places, Planning, Research, Retail Policy, Scotland's Town and High Streets, Scotland's Towns Partnership, Scottish Government, Town Centre Action Plan, Town Centre Review, Town Centres, Towns, Towns Typology, Understanding Scottish Places, University of Stirling, USP | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where Good Food is a Religion

Regular readers of this blog will be aware of my passion for Welsh rugby, fresh food and especially markets.  Every so often the stars align and we take ourselves off to Rome where all can be indulged.  And so it … Continue reading

Posted in Campagna Amica, Consumer Lifestyle, Diet and Health, Eataly, Farmers Markets, Food, Food Quality, Food Tourism, Gastronomy, Markets, Producers, Rugby Union, Scotland Food and Drink, Slow Food, Sparks, Supply Chains, Sustainability | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Two new academic papers on healthy eating and sport

The last few weeks of 2016 saw the release in early view of two new articles on which I am co-author.  Both are slightly unrelated directly to retailing, but they do have tangential interest for those who know my broader … Continue reading

Posted in Academics, Advertising, Communications, Consumer Lifestyle, Cooperative Group, CSR, Diet and Health, Food Retailing, Pricing, Promotion, Sport | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Waaaagaaamaaamaaa – Tesco and Booker spring a surpise (perhaps)

I read something the other day whereby the author noted that such was the bad news coming out of this government and the USA so far in January, they were getting nostalgic for the calm and reason of 2016. When … Continue reading

Posted in Association of Convenience Stores, Booker, Click and Collect, Competition, Competition and Markets Authority, Consumer Change, Consumer Lifestyle, Convenience stores, Food and Beverage, Food Retailing, Mergers, Restaurants, Retail Change, Tesco, Wholesaling | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Co-operative Tokens, Sports Direct and The Bristol Pound

A little while ago I put up the photograph above on Twitter of three Co-operative Society tokens I had found; in this case from the Pontycymmer Industrial and Co-operative Society for a large loaf and one pint and a half … Continue reading

Posted in Bristol Pound, Community Co-operatives, Cooperative Tokens, Cooperatives, Food Retailing, History, Local Currency, Local Multiplier, Localisation, Places, Retail Change, Sports Direct | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The ‘squeezed middle’ and the domino effect in the grocery supply chain

A popular phrase used in media and other commentary on the UK grocery system is that “Small firms are being ‘squeezed’ by their powerful partners“.   This is shorthand for financial pressures put on SMEs by large organisations such as grocery … Continue reading

Posted in Academics, Brexit, Food Retailing, Governance, Networks, Pressure, Regulation, Relationships, Retailers, Suppliers, Supply Chains, Sustainability, Toblerone | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment