Search Conferences

Type in any word, words or author name. This searchs through the abstract title, keywords and abstract text and authors. You may search all conferences or just select one conference.

 All Conferences
 EMAC 2019 Annual Conference
 EMAC 2020 Annual Conference
 EMAC 2020 Regional Conference
 EMAC 2021 Annual Conference
 EMAC 2021 Regional Conference
 EMAC 2022 Annual
 EMAC 2022 Regional Conference
 EMAC 2023 Annual
 EMAC 2023 Regional Conference

EMAC 2023 Annual

How and when front-line employee diversity impacts luxury brand equity

Published: May 24, 2023


Karen T. Bowen, University of Leeds; Christina Papadopoulou, University of Leeds; giuseppe musarra, University of Leeds


Diversity and inclusion is an emerging priority in the luxury and fashion industry landscapes. Yet, market reports continue to highlight inadequate progress, with disappointing figures demonstrating a lack of diversity embedment across the organization. Previous research on workplace diversity largely focuses on documenting the positive impact of diversity in boardrooms and top management teams, but largely overlooks the ‘face’ of the company: front-line employees (FLEs). FLEs represent the brand and are crucial in determining the quality of consumer-brand relationships. In three experiments, this research tests a framework explaining how and when a diverse team of FLEs enhances brand equity. Results show that FLE diversity increases brand equity. A serial mediation mechanism explains this effect: diverse FLEs drive perceptions of brand rebelliousness, which in turn increase brand coolness and consequently brand equity. Lastly, results show that, for consumers high in material values, the effect of brand rebelliousness on brand coolness is weaker.