School of Business publications portal
This portal is no longer updated. Aalto University School of Business Master's Theses are now in the Aaltodoc publication archive (Aalto University institutional repository)
School of Business | Department of Marketing | Marketing | 2016
Thesis number: 14715
How Do Consumers Living Abroad Talk about Including Finnishness to their Identities? Social Identity Theory in the Acculturation Process of Expatriate Finns in Madrid
Author: Mäntylä, Katariina
Title: How Do Consumers Living Abroad Talk about Including Finnishness to their Identities? Social Identity Theory in the Acculturation Process of Expatriate Finns in Madrid
Year: 2016  Language: eng
Department: Department of Marketing
Academic subject: Marketing
Index terms: markkinointi; kuluttajat; kuluttajakäyttäytyminen; identiteetti; ulkomailla työskentely; tarina
Pages: 116
Full text:
» hse_ethesis_14715.pdf pdf  size:2 MB (1131860)
Key terms: Consumer Acculturation, Acculturation of Finnish Expatriates, Social Identity Theory, Analysis of Narratives
This thesis studies the acculturation process of Finnish consumers living in Madrid from the perspec-tive of maintaining ties to Finland. The behavior of these expatriate Finns was found to be strongly affected by group behavior, since one´s nationality plays an important role in social categorizations, therefore, social identity theory is used in this study. The objective of this thesis is discovering how Finnish expatriates in Spain negotiate Finnishness to participate in their identity formation process mainly at the social level of identity and in which activities this identity work results in. Also, how the participation in these activities affects acculturation to the new environment is discussed.

By performing an analysis of narratives on the narrative reports of 8 Finnish nationals living in Madrid, Spain, several contributions to the study of consumer acculturation were suggested. It is argued that the expatriate Finns of this study identify themselves or at least get allocated by others to become members of the Finnish expatriate group. As they are invested in this membership, behaviors that en-hance their group membership result in various activities. These activities were allocated to several themes: trying to continue their life in two places, how mother language anchors identity, Finnish networks in Madrid, Finnish possessions, enhancing distinctiveness by using their ethnic background and bringing Finnish culture to be a part of one´s close relationships and thus, the relational level of social self.

it is suggested that identification as an expatriate Finn, while supporting construction of a more har-monious identity, can however, postpone deeper acculturation to the new host culture. Such an identi-ty position can allow an identity with maintenance of certain Finnish attributes and loss of some to support desires to see oneself as more international, but can result in feelings of lower membership to the local group. On the other hand, it is suggested that modern technology can help the construction of a more unified self during movement, since it enables the membership in the expatriate group to be-come more meaningful for Finns, who are living abroad.
Electronic publications are subject to copyright. The publications can be read freely and printed for personal use. Use for commercial purposes is forbidden.