Sailing through marketing: A critical assessment of spatiality in marketing literature

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Marketing has historically been entangled with the study of geography, which has become a very popular focus in the marketing literature nowadays. However, spatially-oriented perspectives in marketing tend to rest on a conceptual divide between place-oriented and space-oriented thinking, thus inhibiting the production of more eclectic and creative spatial knowledge. This conceptual paper endeavors to overcome this dichotomy by rethinking spatiality in terms of boundedness, openness, functionality and expressivity. These constitute the four cardinal points of a “compass rose” that marketers can use to reassess and combine different appreciations of spatiality. The paper suggests the idea of “sailing” as an appropriate metaphor to explore pioneering multi-dimensional appreciations of geography in marketing and go beyond the divide between place-oriented and space-oriented thinking.


External organisations
  • University of Leicester
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Business Administration


  • space, place, geography, spatiality, marketing theory, metaphors
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-159
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Business Research
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Publication categoryResearch