Consumer Wellbeing Research Group

The Consumer Wellbeing Research Group is a multi-disciplinary group committed to providing research and insight into consumption behaviours and influences that facilitate or inhibit the health, wellbeing and quality of life for consumers.

The Group’s mission is to address real world issues primarily through a social marketing lens using rigorous methodologies to produce insights, advice, and interventions that lead to positive economic, social and environmental impact.

Researchers within the group have undertaken projects related to positive or healthy ageing; the relationship between alcohol and depression; how alcohol brands engage consumers through social media; food literacy and families; the relationship between gambling and depression; family identity influences on gambling; athlete and consumer vulnerability in sport; financial wellbeing; and social marketing strategy.

The Group is committed to developing collaborative research partnerships with industry, health promotion agencies, government, and community groups. We also welcome the opportunity to engage with other researchers with common interests and complementary capabilities, both within RMIT and outside.

Research Partnerships


Our people

Steering committee

Associate Professor Foula Kopanidis

Foula’s research interests include consumption and choice behaviour, selection criteria, ageing, well-being and quality of life.

Professor Mike Reid

Mike’s research interests encompass consumer lifestyles and wellbeing, healthy middle aging, men’s health and wellbeing, and food literacy and healthy eating.

Professor Kate Westberg

Kate’s interests include health and wellbeing-related consumption behaviours and influences particularly in relation to ageing, food wellbeing and sport.


Westberg, K., Reid, M., Kopanidis, F. (2020). Age identity, stereotypes and older consumers’ service experiences, Journal of Services Marketing, 1 – 11

Sinclair, S., de Silva, A., Kopanidis, F.Z., Thomas, S. (2020) Measuring, Understanding and Improving Wellbeing Among Older People  in Housing and Ageing Well, Springer eBook Springer Nature.

Kopanidis, F., Robinson, L., Shaw, M. (2016). ”I’m not old enough!” Why older single women are not engaging in retirement planning services In: Rediscovering the Essentiality of Marketing, Springer International Publishing, Switzerland.

Kopanidis, F.,Robinson, L.,Reid, M. (2016). To stay or to go? Postretirement housing choices of single baby boomer women,  Journal of Women and Aging, 1 – 11.

Kopanidis, F, Robinson, L and Reid, M (2014), State of inertia: psychological preparation of single Australian and UK baby boomer women for retirement housing change, Journal of Women and Aging, 26 (3), 280-297.

Awaworyi Churchill, S.,Farrell, L. (2019). (In Press) Australia’s Gambling Epidemic: The Role of Neighbourhood Ethnic Diversity In: Journal of Gambling Studies, 1 – 22.

Westberg, K., Stavros, C., Smith, A., Munro, G., Argus, K. (2018). An examination of how alcohol brands use sport to engage consumers on social media, In: Drug and Alcohol Review, 37, 28 – 35.

Farrell, L. (2018). Understanding the relationship between subjective wellbeing and gambling behavior In: Journal of Gambling Studies, 34, 55 – 71.

Awaworyi Churchill, S., Farrell, L. (2018). The impact of gambling on depression: New evidence from England and Scotland In: Economic Modelling, 68, 475 – 483.

Churchill, S.A. and Farrell, L. (2017). Alcohol and depression: Evidence from the 2014 Health Survey for England, Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 180, 86-92.

Farrell, L. (2017) Understanding the relationship between subjective wellbeing and gambling behaviour, Journal of Gambling Studies doi: 10.1007/s10899-017-9692-4.

Westberg, K., Beverland, M., Thomas, S. (2017). The unintended normalization of gambling: Family identity Influences on the adoption of gambling In: Journal of Macromarketing, 1 – 18.

Farrell, L. (2012) Chasing Data: Sources of Data for the Study of Gambling Economics, Australian Economic Review, 45(4), 488-496.

Russell, R., Kutin, J. & Marriner, T. (2020) Financial Capability Research in Australia. RMIT University.

Kutin, J., Reid, M., Russell, R. (2019). Special WSMC edition paper: What is this thing called money? Economic abuse in young adult relationships In: Journal of Social Marketing, 9, 111 – 128.

Kutin, J., Russell, R., Reid, M. (2017). Economic abuse between intimate partners in Australia: Prevalence, health status, disability and financial stress, Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 41, 269-274.

Farrell, L., Fry, R.L. and Risse, L. (2016). The significance of financial self-efficacy in explaining women’s personal financial behaviour, Journal of Economic Psychology, 54, 85–99.

Brennan, L., Chin, S., Molenaar, A., Barklamb, A. M., Lim, M. S., Reid, M., ... & McCaffrey, T. A. (2020). Beyond Body Weight: Design and Validation of Psycho-Behavioural Living and Eating for Health Segments (LEHS) Profiles for Social Marketing. Nutrients12(9), 2882.

Barklamb, A.M., Molenaar, A., Brennan, L., Evans, S., Choong, J., Herron, E., Reid, M. and McCaffrey, T.A., 2020. Learning the Language of Social Media: A Comparison of Engagement Metrics and Social Media Strategies used by Food and Nutrition-related Social Media Accounts. Nutrients12(9), p.2839.

Wijayaratne S, Westberg K, Reid M, Worsley A. (2020). A qualitative study exploring the dietary gatekeeper's food literacy and barriers to healthy eating in the home environment. Health Promotion Journal of Australia, 1–9,

Molenaar, A., Choi, T. S., Brennan, L., Reid, M., Lim, M. S., Truby, H., McCaffrey, T.A. (2020). Language of Health of Young Australian Adults: A Qualitative Exploration of Perceptions of Health, Wellbeing and Health Promotion via Online Conversations. Nutrients, 12(4), 887.

Brennan, L., Klassen, K., Weng, E., Chin,S., Molenaar, A., Reid, M., Truby, H., McCaffrey, T.A. (2020). A social marketing perspective of young adults’ concepts of eating for health: is it a question of morality? International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 2020 17:44

Reid, M., Chin, S., Molenaar, A., Brennan, L., Truby, H., & McCaffrey, T. (2019). Learning from Social Marketing: Living and Eating for Health Segments (LEHS) and Social Media Use (P16-023-19). Current Developments in Nutrition, 3(Supplement_1), nzz050-P16.

Klassen, K.,Douglass, C.,Brennan, L.,Truby, H.,Lim, M. (2018). Social media use for nutrition outcomes in young adults: A mixed-methods systematic review In: International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 15, 1 – 20.

Klassen, K., Borleis, E., Brennan, L., Reid, M., Mccaffrey, T.,Lim, M. (2018). What do people “like”? An analysis of social media strategies used by food industry brands, lifestyle brands and health promotion organizations on Facebook and Instagram In: Journal of Medical Internet Research, 20, 1 – 9.

Lombard, C., Brennan, L., Reid, M., Klassen, K., Palermo, C., Walker, T., Lim, M., Dean, M., McCaffrey, T., Truby, H. (2018). Communicating health-Optimising young adults’ engagement with health messages using social media: Study protocol In: Nutrition & Dietetics, 75, 509 – 519.

Wijayaratne, S., Reid, M., Westberg, K., Worsley, A., Mavondo, F. (2018). Food literacy, healthy eating barriers and household diet In: European Journal of Marketing, 52, 2449 – 2477.

Burton, M., Reid, M., Worsley, A. and Mavondo, F. (2017). Food skills confidence and household gatekeepers’ dietary practices. Appetite, 108, 183-190.

Reid, M., Worsley, A., Mavondo, F. (2015). The obesogenic household: Factors influencing dietary gatekeeper satisfaction with family diet, Psychology and Marketing, 32, 544-557.

Gurrieri, L., Drenten, J. (2019). Visual storytelling and vulnerable health care consumers: normalising practices and social support through Instagram, Journal of Services Marketing, 33, 702 – 720.

Gurrieri, L.,Gordon, R.,Barraket, J.,Joyce, A.,Green, C. (2018). Social marketing and social movements: creating inclusive social change coalitions, Journal of Social Marketing, 8, 354 – 377.

Parker, L., Sidik, M., Truong, T. (2020). Towards universal helmet use: Advocating for change Vietnam. In Knox, K., Kubacki, K., Rundle-Thiele, S. (Eds.). Stakeholder Involvement in Social Marketing: Challenges and Approaches to Engagement. Abingdon, UK: Routledge.

Trong Nhan, L., Parker, L., Son, M., Parker, E., Moore, M., Sidik, M., Draisin, N. (2019). Evaluation of an integrated multisector campaign to increase child helmet use in Vietnam In: Injury Prevention, 25, 206 – 210.

Duong, H., Parker, L. (2018). Going with the flow: Young motorcyclists’ misperceived norms and motorcycle speeding behaviour In: Journal of Social Marketing, 8, 314 – 332.

Brennan, L., Donnar, G., Parker, L., & Alessi, N. (2018). “I know what I’m doing”: communicating a safety message to change the attitudes and behaviours of older men. In Hastings & Domegan. Social Marketing: Rebels with a cause (3rd ed.) (pp.406-419). Abingdon: Routledge.

Fry, M.-L., Previte, J., and Brennan, L. (2017). Social change design: Disrupting the benchmark template Journal of Social Marketing, 7(2), online available

Brennan, L., Previte, J., and Fry, M.-L., (2016), Social marketing’s consumer myopia: Embracing a systems view of social change markets, Journal of Social Marketing, 6(4), 219-239.
Parker, L., Brennan, L. and Nguyen, D. (2015). Social Marketing: Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. In C. Rowley & B. Nguyen (Eds.) Ethical and Social Marketing in Asia. Woodhead Chandos Publishing. pp.161-191.

Brennan L, Fry M-L and Previte J. (2015). Strengthening social marketing research: Harnessing “insight” through ethnography. Australasian Marketing Journal, 23(4), 286-293.
Parker, L., Brennan, L., & Nguyen, D. (2015). Social Marketing: Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. In Nguyen, B. & Rowley, C. (Eds.), Ethical and Social Marketing in Asia (pp.161-192). Amsterdam: Elsevier.

Brennan, L., Binney, W., Parker, L., Aleti, T., & Nguyen, D. (2014). Social marketing and behaviour change: Models, theory and applications, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Brennan, L., & Parker, L. (2014). Beyond behaviour change: social marketing and social change, Journal of Social Marketing, 4(3), 194-197.

Nguyen, D., Parker, L., Brennan, L. and Clements, A. (2014). The taboo question: Condom retailing in Vietnam and social marketing implications, Journal of Social Marketing, 4(2).

Parker, L. (2013). Personal hygiene, environmental sanitation: A Case of Social Marketing in the Mekong Delta. In L. Brennan, L. Parker, L., T. Aleti Watne, J. Fien, T. H. Duong, & M. A. Doan (Eds.), Growing sustainable communities: A development guide for Southeast Asia (pp. 241-253). Prahran: Tilde University Press.

Watne, T., and Brennan, L. (2012). Behavioural change starts in the family: The role of family communication and implications for social marketing. Journal of Nonprofit & Public Sector Marketing, 23(4), 367-386.

Smith, A., Stavros, C., Westberg, K. (2020). Cognitive Enhancing Drugs in Sport: Current and Future Concerns, Substance Use & Misuse, 55, 2064 – 2075.

Smith, A.C.T., & Stavros, C. (2020). Exploring the Progressive Use of Performance Enhancing Substances by High-Performance Athletes. Substance Use & Misuse.

Smith, A., Stewart, B., Westberg, K., Stavros, C. (2018). Performance and Image Enhancing Drugs and Substances, Routledge, New York, United States.

Heffernan, M.,Stavros, C.,Westberg, K.,Dobele, A.,Smith, A. (2018). Australia In: Routledge Handbook of Physical Activity Policy and Practice, Routledge International Handbooks, United Kingdom.

Westberg, K., Stavros, C., Smith, A., Newton, J., Lindsay, S., Kelly, S., Beus, S., Adair, D. (2017). Exploring the wicked problem of athlete and consumer vulnerability in sport, Journal of Social Marketing, 7 (1), 94 – 112.

Farrell, L., Hollingsworth, B., Propper, C. and Shields, M. (2014). The socioeconomic gradient in physical activity: Evidence from one million adults in England, Social Science and Medicine, 123, 55-63.

Smith, A., Stavros, C., Westberg, K., Wilson, B., Boyle, C. (2014). Alcohol-related player behavioral transgressions: Incidences, fan media responses, and a harm-reduction alternative, International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 49, 400 – 416.



Contact us

For more information on the Consumer Wellbeing Research Group please contact Professor Kate Westberg.

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Acknowledgement of Country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.

aboriginal flag
torres strait flag

Acknowledgement of Country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business.