UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

Retail Competition and Consumer Choice, 2002-2004

Title details

SN: 5049
Title: Retail Competition and Consumer Choice, 2002-2004
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-5049-1
Depositor: Clarke, I., Lancaster University. Management School. Department of Marketing
Principal investigator(s): Clarke, I., Lancaster University. Management School. Department of Marketing
Jackson, P., University of Sheffield. Department of Geography
Hallsworth, A., Manchester Metropolitan University. Business School. Department of Retailing and Marketing
Sponsor(s): Economic and Social Research Council
Grant number: R000239531
Other acknowledgements: Dr. Ronan de Kervenoael, Research Associate, Lancaster University Management School, Department of Marketing. Responsible for the quantitative phase of the project under the supervision of Professor Ian Clarke and Professor Alan Hallsworth.

Dr. Rossana Perez-del-Aguila, Research Associate, University of Sheffield, Geography Department. Responsible for the qualitative phase of the project under the supervision of Professor Peter Jackson.


The citation for this study is:

Clarke, I., Jackson, P., Hallsworth, A. (2004). Retail Competition and Consumer Choice, 2002-2004. [data collection]. UK Data Service. SN: 5049,

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Subject Categories

Consumer behaviour - Economics
Industrial/commercial location - Industry and management
Nutrition - Health
Social attitudes and behaviour - Society and culture
Trade, industry and markets - Industry and management


Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

This project addressed the implication of the growth in concentration in food retailing in the UK – resulting from the consolidation and small store decline over the long term - with reference to its impact on consumer choice. The reference point of the study was the UK Competition Commission (2000) conclusion that the degree to which consumers will have adequate choice will depend on local circumstances. The project addressed this specific issue by exploring changing retail provision between 1980 and 2002 in an 'average' situation (Portsmouth), where extensive, large scale quantitative surveys of shopping behaviour were combined with qualitative studies to provide a richer understanding of different households' use and experiences of local retail provision.

The baseline for the core of the study was the replication of a survey conducted in Portsmouth by Hallsworth and reported in: Hallsworth, A.G. (1988) The human impact of hypermarkets and superstores, Aldershot: Avebury. In addition, the approach and conceptual framework of the research were informed by two particular prior publications from members of the research team:
  • Clarke, I (2000) 'Retail power, competition and local consumer choice in the UK grocery sector' European Journal of Marketing, 34(8), pp.975-1002;

  • Miller, D. et al (1998) Shopping, place and identity, London, Routledge.
  • Main Topics:
    This data collection comprises the qualitative and quantitative data from the project 'Retail Competition and Consumer Choice'. The data were gathered between 2002 and 2004 in the Portsmouth area. The quantitative data comprises two files which include the variables and coding from two surveys: the first survey was carried out at supermarkets' sites and the second survey took the form of a postal questionnaire distributed by hand to residents' homes in the study area (Portsmouth).

    The qualitative data collection comprises:
  • eight transcriptions of accompanied shopping trips;

  • eight transcriptions of kitchen visits to 10 participants in eight households located in Paulsgrove and Purbrook, two contrasting neighbourhoods in the Portsmouth area.

  • For both sets of transcriptions, the original observation and interview guides are included. Guides for the accompanied shopping trips were customised to each participant. Each guide includes also a summary of the first accompanied shopping trip and the diary that participants completed during 10 days. The guide for the kitchen visit was the same for all participants.

    Standard Measures:
    Likert Scales were applied in the quantitative phase.

    Coverage, universe, methodology

    Time period: Some information in the interview transcripts covers previous shopping habits prior to the opening of some supermarket stores in the area.
    Dates of fieldwork: 2002 - 2004
    Country: England
    Geography: Portsmouth
    Spatial units: No spatial unit
    Observation units: Individuals
    Kind of data: Textual data
    Numeric data
    Individual (micro) level
    Universe: Subnational
    The quantitative surveys were conducted with supermarket shoppers, and the qualitative research with persons responsible for their household's main grocery shopping, resident in Portsmouth between 2002 and 2004
    Time dimensions: Cross-sectional (one-time) study
    Sampling procedures: Simple random sample; Purposive selection/case studies
    Number of units: Store survey: 2594 target, 2515 obtained. Area survey: 2000 target, 430 obtained. Household case studies: 8.
    Method of data collection: Face-to-face interview; Postal survey; Observation
    Semi-structured interview transcripts; Interview summaries; Observation field notes (included with transcripts).
    Weighting: No weighting used (quantitative data), not applicable (qualitative data)

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    Administrative and access information

    Date of release:
    First edition: 07 December 2004
    Copyright: Copyright I. Clarke, P. Jackson and A. Hallsworth
    Access conditions: The depositor has specified that registration is required and standard conditions of use apply. The depositor may be informed about usage. See terms and conditions of access for further information.
    Availability: UK Data Service
    Contact: Get in touch


    Title File Name Size (KB)
    User Guide 5049userguide.pdf 806
    Data Listing q5049ulist.pdf 16
    Study information and citation UKDA_Study_5049_Information.htm 6
    READ File read5049.txt 7


    View publications... Hide publications...

    By principal investigator(s):
    Clarke, I., et al. (2003) 'Real choice in food grocery shopping' IN Britain, The European Retail Digest, Oxford Institute of Retail Management, Issue 39, pp.7-13.

  • Clarke, I., et al. Real competition and consumer choice are located: experiencing long-term retail change’ paper presented at Lancaster University, Sociology Department seminar series, March 2003.

  • Jackson, P. Consumption and identity: how households choose, paper presented to the Working Group on Health and Low-Income Households, Sheffield, 14 July 2003.

  • Kirkup, M., et al. Down my street: intra-suburban 'neighbourhood' perspectives on retail choice, paper presented at CIRM Manchester Metropolitan, 2003.

  • Clarke, I., et al. (2004) ''Real' choice is located: contextualising the 'food deserts' debate', special edition of International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management on 'Food Deserts', 32(2), pp.89-99.

  • Clarke, I., et al. Retail re-structuring and consumer choice 1: long-term local changes in consumer behaviour: Portsmouth, 1980-2002, paper presented at Special Session, Association of American Geographers Conference (2004) – 'Unpacking Retail: Globalization, Competition and Local Consumption', organised by Professor Ian Clarke (Lancaster University Management School) and Professor Neil Wrigley (University of Southampton), as part of Economic Geography Group, Centennial AAG Conference, Philadelphia, 15-19th March.
  • Jackson, P., et al. Retail re-structuring and consumer choice 2: understanding consumer choice at the household level, paper also presented at special session detailed above, 2004.

  • Hallsworth, A., Twenty years of retail change, paper presented at Institute of Directors/Pro-Manchester, Manchester, Feb 26th 2004.

  • Retail Competition and Consumer Choice, dissemination briefing report presented at Workshop for Business and Policy-makers, Canada House, 8th June 2004. Further details may be found on the Lancaster University Retail Competition and Consumer Choice web page.

  • Resulting from secondary analysis:


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