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Personal profile

Research interests

My research interests span across three interconnected, interdisciplinary research domains: research related to boundary spanning elements in organisations, research on sustainability and related issues and research on e-commerce and digital marketing. 

Within the larger domain of boundary spanning elements, I focus specifically on frontline employees in service organisation, sales persons, sales management as well as research on management of distribution channels in firms. Across these research domains, I have used a variety of research approaches and theoretical lenses. 

In sustainability related resarch, I have looked at adoption of environmental strategies by firms, adoption of pro-environmental behaviour by families through the family decision making lens. I am currently looking at envioronmental related decision making by ethnic entreprenuers in U.K. I have also conducted studies in issues like student gambling, problem drinking etc. 

In e-commerce and digital marketing, I am looking at a host of issues like servicescape design, e-service quality, psychological contract violation in e-commerce, internet banking loyalty etc. 

Most of my research involve a positivist research philosophy that attempts to build theory through theorising relationships between constructs embedded in social phenomon and testig the validity of these inter-relationships. 

Supervisory Interests

I am happy to supervise students in topics spanning broad themes within the domain of  marketing, sustainability or strategic management. In marketing I am looking forward to supervise studies in frontline service employee management, personal selling, distribution channel management including supply chain management, strategic marketing including relationship marketing, B2B marketing etc. Within the domain of sustainability I am happy to consider PhD proposals in firm level corporate straties in environmental managemnet, sustainability, social marketing and related fiels. 

I strongly believe that the choice of a research method should  ultimateley be guided by the objectieves conisidered for the particular research study. I am thus happy to guide students across qualitative, quantitative or experimental approaches. My expertise, however is in quantitative research, especially survey based research.  Currently, I am supporting studies that adopt advanced resarch methdologies like agent based modeling, multi-criteria based decision making, eye-tracking based experimentation  etc. I will be very happy to support PhD scholars with interdisciplinary projects which adopts innovative methodolgies

Scholarly biography

During the past two decades that I have been active as a researcher in the field of marketing, management and its associated specializations. I have always tried to conduct research that will be meaningful to the society at large and will also enrich theory in the field of management. Though marketing is my area of specialty, I have always tried to conduct research that is very interdisciplinary in nature that reflects the interconnected nature of knowledge in management as well as in the larger social sciences area.  I strongly believe in versatility as an important characteristic of a successful social scientist and the need to cut across different fields of enquiry. 

Over the years, I have explored several research issues in the area of services management, international management, sustainability and digital marketing. My area of primary focus has been services management and within this the broad area of managing boundary spanning elements in organisations. Having worked for a short while in sales management, I have been fascinated by the multiple-roles played by boundary spanning elements in organisations; roles which require a host of individual capabilities, organizational support and which are very critical.  I have explored several topics in this area including ideas of role stress, customer orientation, control strategies, organizational support etc. These research studies have adopted several theoretical perspectives like role theory, social identity theory, conservation of resources theory, social exchange theory and a host of other theoretical frameworks. I plan to continue my exploration in this field especially in the healthcare sector. Within this area, I have published articles in journals like the Human Resources Management journal, Journal of World Business, European Journal of Marketing, International Journal of Human Resources Management etc. I have also published a text book in distribution channel management which has been in its third edition. 

I have also conducted several studies in the area of environmental management in organizations and the larger question of sustainability. I have won a grant by the British Council to develop a curriculum for sustainability marketing – a project which was completed successfully. Recently I received a grant from the British Academy of pursue resaerch in the area of student gambling. Articles developed from research in this area have been published in British Journal of Management, Journal of WOrld Business and Journal of Business Research.

The third research area where I am planning to contribute in the future is in digital marketing especially the role of social media in society. I have already published several articles in the area of psychological contract violation in e-retailing, e-loyalty, and e-servicescapes. I have published several articles in Journal of Business Research, Informations Systems frontiers, Marketing Intelligence and Planning based on studies in this area. 

I will thus summarize my research approach as realism, combined with a strong belief in the need for interdisciplinary studies that reflects the reality of social sciences research – which is inherently multi-disciplinary. This statement reflects both my strengths as well as my abiding beliefs as a researcher. I enjoy my research precisely because I try to look at it from different angles and different theoretical perspectives.

Approach to teaching

I have been associated with teaching management and allied subjects like marketing, research methodology and strategic management for the past twenty years. I had taught in a variety of universities around the world to students from multiple nationalities and from multiple backgrounds. I have also been heavily involved in teaching executives. I have consistently tried to improve my teaching capabilities and my teaching orientations during this period and believe that a teacher should also be a good student.

My teaching style is heavily influenced by practice. I feel, marketing being a practitioner oriented subject, it is impossible to teach marketing without drawing from practice. I try to bring in practitioner insights using a variety of means. At the basic level, I try to use as many recent examples as possible to enhance my teaching. I have a bank of examples which I add on very frequently in order to support my teaching. Whenever I teach a concept, I try to identify examples that I can link up with. At another level, I try to use very simple case studies developed from recent events to be discussed in the class. This has been very useful to illustrate the link between theory and practice and has been appreciated by my students. Further, I use several problem-based learning techniques, by developing specific class exercises, mini-problem based case studies and longer case studies to make my lectures very interactive and interesting. I have already developed several case studies which has been used in several teaching contexts. The text book that I had written about thirteen years back which is still being used in several universities contain several case studies that I have developed.

To bring in more practical insights I also use short reports provided by commercial agencies like Mintel and Euromonitor to enhance the understanding of the context. In many of my sessions as I begin the discussion of a case study, some of these Mintel, Euromonitor reports are provided as essential reading and discussed prior to the discussion of the main case study. This helps in developing a deeper appreciation of the context before the session gets into the main issues. I also try to plan the case discussion sessions so that the entire scope of the case study is properly explained and discussed.  I have also used simulations in my lectures as a means for making the learning experience very rich and purposeful. I have experimented with several formats including running project based learning sessions and providing digital and online tools for learning.  

Knowledge exchange

My Knowledge exchange activities involve training executives, KTP project and informal consulting assignments. I have provideing training to executives across several functional areas in marketing, strategic management and in research. I had trainied executives in topics like sales management, digital marketing, relationship marketing and services management.  I have offered short term courses as well as one day training courses for managers from a variety of organisations. I have also offered consultancy severices to firms in UK and in India. 

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