Evaluating (Multi-)Method and Empirical Quant Papers

Methodology, multi-method, and empirical “quant” papers in JCR come in different types. What they have in common is that they focus on data and/or methodology. They contribute to consumer research based on this rather than based on theory or a detailed examination of a substantive phenomenon. To be of value these papers must use consumer-relevant data, build on prior consumer research, and provide new consumer insights and/or research methods.

Evaluation Criteria

Multi-Method Papers use a combination of empirical methods to study a phenomenon.

  • Do all methods add value to the overall empirical package?
  • Does each method have a clear purpose? Do the studies form a cohesive whole? The advantages and disadvantages of each method should be considered and described.
  • Do the different methods go together without excessive redundancy between them?
  • If the different methods have different units of analysis, is this explained and justified (ideally on conceptual/theoretical grounds)?
  • Does each subsequent study build on the previous study? Authors should carefully consider the order in which different methods are used.

Empirical Quantitative (“Quant”) Papers use sophisticated statistical, econometric, or machine learning methods to analyze typically large datasets.

  • Does the empirical quant paper offer new insights about consumer behavior?
  • Is some theory or form of explanation provided for key empirical findings?
  • Is there a balance struck between technical complexity and understandability?

New Methods Papers provide a new method that will be of critical use to consumer researchers or provide a new solution that addresses a problem in an existing method that is frequently used in consumer research.

  • Why does consumer research need the method or methodological improvement?
  • Is a balanced set of arguments given in support of the new (or alternative) methodology?
  • Are limitations discussed as well as applications of the method (when and how)?
  • Could JCR readers easily use the method? Depending on the method, authors might include sample datasets, software, code (e.g., in Python or R), step-by-step guides, websites, etc. A new method published in JCR should be shareable, not proprietary.

Examples of (Multi-)Method and Empirical Quant Papers 

Kappes, Heather Barry, Joe J. Gladstone and Hal E. Hershfield (2021), “Beliefs about Whether Spending Implies Wealth,” Journal of Consumer Research, in press. https://doi.org/10.1093/jcr/ucaa060

Wang, Xin (Shane), Shijie Lu, Xi Li, Mansur Khamitov, and Neil Bendle (2021), “Audio Mining: The Role of Vocal Tone in Persuasion,” Journal of Consumer Research, in press. https://doi.org/10.1093/jcr/ucab012

Zhao, Xinshu, John G. Lynch, Jr., and Qimei Chen (2010), “Reconsidering Baron and Kenny: Myths and Truths about Mediation Analysis,” Journal of Consumer Research, 37 (2), 197-206. https://doi.org/10.1086/651257

See more: How Do We Evaluate JCR Papers?

The Editors

Bernd Schmitt, June Cotte, Markus Giesler, Andrew Stephen, and Stacy Wood are the current editors of the Journal of Consumer Research.

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