Reflections on Consumer Financial Insecurity, Risk-Taking and Resilience in Precarious Times

Online - hosted via Zoom
Monday 5 December 2022 (13:00-14:00)

Helen Harris:

The enduring effects of and recurrent nature of global crises and the economic uncertainty they precipitate have highlighted the critical importance of investigating financial insecurity, risk-taking and resilience among different consumer segments and cultures. Professor Deirdre O'Loughlin from Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick in Ireland is the guest speaker.

The culture of credit consumption leading to unmanageable and often recurrent debt facilitated through weak financial lending regulation has been long documented (eg O’Loughlin, 2006; O’Loughlin and Szmigin, 2006; Szmigin and O’Loughlin, 2010) with many consumers targeted, particularly those deemed vulnerable. Additionally, the global financial crisis of 2008 and imposition of strict austerity measures particularly within certain EU states led in turn to a host of economic as well as cultural, social and psychological impacts for consumers (Szmigin et al, 2020; O’Loughlin, 2017) that caused significant and long-term financial uncertainty. COVID-19 represents a similarly significant global crisis with far-reaching and long-term economic, social and health impacts. Recent research has found that austerity and poverty continue to impact an increasingly large and diverse range of people (eg Moraes et al, 2023 forthcoming). 

Based on a review of selected studies over the last two decades, this seminar presents key research insights and reflections relating to financial insecurity, consumer financial risk-taking (eg attitudes and behaviours towards credit and debt), and consumer resilience in response to on-going economic precarity. Key implications and future research directions will be considered.


Professor Deirdre O'Loughlin is an Associate Professor of Marketing in the Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick in Ireland.

She has 25 years’ experience as an academic, researcher and visiting scholar at universities in Ireland, UK and Europe. She currently holds an International Research Fellowship at CHASM, University of Birmingham. Her research interests are focused on a range of critical marketing and consumption areas, including the impact of austerity on individuals and households, consumer credit and debt attitudes and behaviours, marketing and consumer responsibility issues, and social and public policy outcomes.

In collaboration with international research partners, her work has been published in a broad range of high impact peer reviewed journals including Journal of Service Research, Journal of Business Research, European Journal of Marketing, Sociology, Social Policy and Administration, The Services Industries Journal, Journal of Marketing Management, Journal of Strategic Marketing, Journal of Consumer Marketing, and the Australasia Journal of Marketing.

She is Associate Editor of the International Journal of Bank Marketing and is currently co-guest editor of a special issue on Sustainable Banking Practices.

She is co-editing a book exploring theoretical, methodological and policy perspectives on poverty and austerity which is due for publication in 2023.