Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Department of Management


The purpose of this research was to establish the link between the family gift-giving process and consumer socialisation in individualistic and collectivistic cultures. Because of the exploratory nature of this investigation, the objective was to develop rather than to test a model. Four assumptions that emanated from the theoretical concepts in the existing literature were made. These assumptions were used to generate five research questions. The five research questions were explored through a series of in-depth interviews with sixty-eight individuals from sixteen families of Australian Anglo-Celtic and Sino- Vietnamese backgrounds. All the families were nuclear and of middle- class socioeconomic status. They consisted of both parents living together with their children. The fathers were the main income earners and the mothers were primarily working as full-time homemakers. All the children were between the ages of 12 and 21 years. The findings supported the main assumptions of the study. They established that:

(1) individuals differ in the role that they play in family gift giving within and across cultures; (2) culture affects the gift-giving family interaction style; and (3) the family gift-giving process leads to consumer socialisation in the two cultures. The findings from this research were used to suggest extensions of the proposed model, directions for further research, and practical implications for marketers.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.