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Niraj Dawar

Visiting Scholar


I am the Barford Professor of Marketing at the Ivey Business School, Canada. I study marketing, brands, consumer behaviour, and strategy. My publications in these areas have appeared in the Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Marketing, Harvard Business Review, M.I.T. Sloan Management Review, Journal of International Business Studies, Marketing Letters, and other academic and managerial outlets. I also publish comment pieces and press articles some of which have appeared in the Financial Times, the International Herald Tribune, the Globe & Mail, Business Standard, and Business Today. I have worked in Europe, North America and Asia. Previously, I was on the INSEAD faculty from 1991-1998 as Assistant, then Associate Professor. In 2009-2010, I was Visiting Professor at INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France) and at the Vlerick School (Gent, Belgium). In 2005-06, I was Visiting Professor of Marketing at INSEAD’s Asia campus in Singapore. In 2000 I was Visiting Research Professor at the University of Michigan Business School. In 1994 and again in 1995, I was a Visiting Scholar at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. I have written a number of case studies that have received awards from the European Foundation for Management Development. I am an active contributor to international conferences on business and marketing issues, and have worked in an advisory role with leading companies around the world. Niraj can be reached here.

Read case studies by Niraj here.

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Marketing Advice for the NSA

As the media’s and the public’s short attention span inevitably shifts from coverage of the NSA’s activities to the next Kardashian story, you’ll be turning your attention from crisis-management to the long game. You’ll be re-examining your strategy, methods, and tactics for achieving total information awareness. In this, you could learn from companies in the private sector.


Hobson’s choice on Tuesday

One of the things that marketing does really well is to make small differences loom large. To believe the ads, the difference between Tide and Sunlight laundry detergents, between Coke and Pepsi colas, Nike and Adidas athletic shoes, and Shell and Exxon gasoline, are so vast and so consequential that you should make your decisions to buy one or the other very very carefully.


Apple, directionless?

The Apple Maps App fiasco is having an interesting effect on the company’s brand and its loyal fan following. The inevitable “this would not have happened had Steve still been here” conclusion is all over the internet.


“No really, my market is different!”

Speak to enough brand managers of a global brand in countries around the world and you’ll soon come to expect the all too common refrain: “…but my market is different.” Ask them to elaborate, and you’ll get the low down on how consumer habits in their market are different, their consumers’ purchase behaviour is different, preferences and tastes are different, how the media and the retail trade are different, and how their consumers and customers require unique, tailored, and delicate handling.


Pink shades for everyone!

Economic slowdowns, recessions, and even depressions are made worse than they should be because of psychological effects. In the expectation of an economic downturn businesses hold off on investments, consumers delay big ticket spending, and save rather than spend. The more talk there is of recession, the more a recession is likely. Recession becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.


What happened to disintermediation?

With the rise of the web in the 1990s came predictions of disintermediation. In a world where the upstream players (the makers of products and services) could reach end customers directly through the internet, there was no longer a raison d’être for intermediaries.