This page contains details of some of the recent journal article publications by members of the Institute for Retail Studies. Pre-print versions of these articles are available online from the University of Stirling’s Depository (STORRE) in most cases, or contact the author or Leigh Sparks directly.
M Rybaczewska and L Sparks (2020) Locally-owned convenience stores and the local economy. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 52
The convenience store sector in the UK has been growing strongly in recent years. Anecdotal commentary and media coverage claims that locally-owned stores are more advantageous for community coherence and resilience, being embedded socially and economically more strongly (than chain stores) in their local community. This paper extends our understanding of this. Following a review of the literature on social and economic aspects of convenience store operation, a multi-stage mainly qualitative research process was undertaken. Using four case stores in Scotland, this research demonstrates the local engagement of locally owned convenience stores and points to a stronger awareness and detail of the economic rather than the social aspects of this engagement. Differences with corporately owned convenience stores are identified. In policy terms the research shows that more work needs to be done to identify, quantify and then promote the advantages of local ownership of stores.
Stead M, Eadie D, McKell J, Sparks L, MacGregor A and AS Anderson (2020) Making hospital shops healthier: evaluating the implementation of a mandatory standard for limiting food products and promotions in hospital retail outlets. BMC Public Health (2020), 20:132
innovative Scottish Healthcare Retail Standard (HRS) is a national mandatory scheme requiring all hospital food retail outlets to change the balance of food products stocked and their promotion to comply with nutritional criteria and promotional restrictions. The aim is to facilitate healthier food choices in healthcare settings. This study examined the implementation of HRS and the impact on foods stocked and promoted. The study aimed to examine implementation process and changes to the retail environment in relation to food promotions and choice. A sample of hospital retail outlets (n = 17) including shops and trolley services were surveyed using a mixed methods design comprising: (a) structured observational audits of stock, layout and promotions (with a specific focus on chocolate and fruit product lines), and (b) face-to-face, semi-structured interviews with the shop manager or nominated members of staff (n = 32). Data were collected at Wave 1 (2016), at the beginning and during the early stages of HRS implementation; and Wave 2, 12 months later, after the HRS implementation deadline.Positive changes in food retail outlets occurred after hospital shops were required to implement HRS. By creating a consistent approach across hospital shops in Scotland, HRS changed the food retail environment for hospital staff, visitors and patients. HRS provides a regulatory template and implementation learning points for influencing retail environments in other jurisdictions and settings.