The Children's Consumer Culture Project

Relevant publications


Relevant papers from our research group (alphabetical):

Ashikali, E.-M., & Dittmar, Helga (2011). The effect of priming materialism on women's responses to thin-ideal media. British Journal of Social Psychology.

Banerjee, R. A., & Dittmar, H. E. (2008).  Individual differences in children's materialism: The role of peer relations. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34, 17-31.

Bell, B. T., Lawson, R., & Dittmar, H. (2007). The impact of thin models in music videos on adolescent girls’ body dissatisfaction. Body Image, 4, 137-145.

Dittmar, H. & Kapur, P. (2011). Consumerism and well-being in India and the UK: Identity projection and emotion regulation as underlying psychological processes. Special issue on Self and Identity. Psychological Studies, 65, 71-85. 

Dittmar, H. (2009). How do ‘body perfect’ ideals in the media have a negative impact on body image and behaviours? Factors and processes related to self and identity. Editorial for special issue on Mass media, body image and eating behaviours. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 28, 1-8.

Dittmar, H. E. (2007). The costs of consumer culture and the 'cage within': The impact of the material 'good life' and 'body perfect' ideals on individuals' identity and well-being. Psychological Inquiry, 18, 23-59.

Dittmar, H. E. (2008). Consumer culture, identity and well-being: The search for the 'good life' and the 'body perfect'. Hove, Psychology Press.

Dittmar, H. E. (2011). Material and Consumer Identities. In S. J. Schwartz, K. Luyckx, V. L. Vignoles. (Eds.), Handbook of Identity Theory and Research (pp. 745-770). New York, NY: Springer.

Dittmar, H., Bond, R., Hurst, M., & Kasser, T. (2013). The relationship betweenmaterialism and personal well-being: A meta-analysis. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology

Dittmar, H., Halliwell, E. & Stirling, E. (2009). Understanding the impact of thin media models on women’s body-focused affect: The roles of thin-ideal internalization and weight-related self-discrepancy activation in experimental exposure effects. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 28, 43-72.

Dittmar, H., Halliwell, E., & Ive, S. (2006). Does Barbie make girls want to be thin? The effect of experimental exposure to images of dolls on the body image of 5-8-year-old girls. Developmental Psychology, 42, 283-292.

Dittmar, H., Long, K. & Bond, R. (2007). When a better self is only a button click away: Associations between materialistic values, emotional and identity-related buying motives, and compulsive buying tendency online. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 26, 334-361.

Easterbrook, M. J., Wright, M., Dittmar, H. E., & Banerjee, R. A. (2014). Consumer culture ideals, extrinsic motivations, and well-being in children. European Journal of Social Psychology, Advanced Online Publication. DOI: 10.1002/ejsp.2020

Halliwell, E., Dittmar, H., & Orsborn, A. (2007). The effects of exposure to muscular male models amongst men who use the gym and non-exercisers: The moderating role of exercising to increase muscle strength. Body Image, 4, 278-287.

Hurst, M., Dittmar, H., Bond, R., & Kasser, T. (in press). The relationship between materialistic values and environmental attitudes and behaviors: A meta-analysis.  Journal of Environmental Psychology.

Kasser, T. (2002). The high price of materialism. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Kasser, T., Rosenblum, K. L., Sameroff, A. J., Deci, E. J., Niemiec, C. P., Ryan, R. M., Arnadottir, O., Bond, R., Dittmar, H., Dungan, N., & Hawks, S. (2014). Changes in materialism, changes in psychological well-being: Evidence from three longitudinal studies and an intervention experiment. Motivation and Emotion, 38, 1-22.

Ku, L., Dittmar, H., & Banerjee, R. (2012).  Are materialistic teenagers less motivated to learn? Cross-sectional and longitudinal evidence from UK and Hong Kong. Journal of Educational Psychology, 104, 74-86.

Ku, L., Dittmar, H., & Banerjee, R. (in press). To have or to learn:  The effects of materialism on British and Chinese children's learning.  Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.


Keynotes/invited addresses on this project (chronological):

Banerjee, R., Dittmar, E., Easterbrook, M., & Wright, M. (2012). Consumer culture and children’s well-being: Perspectives from developmental and social psychology. Invited keynote presentation at 5th International Conference on Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Child and Teen Consumption, Milan, Italy, December 12-14. Website:

Dittmar, H. (2014). What is the impact of consumer culture values on well-being? Meta-analytic, experimental, and longitudinal evidence. Invited keynote presentation at a Special One-day Seminar of the Self-Determination Group, University of Gent, Belgium, March 7.

Dittmar, H., Banerjee, R., Easterbrook, M., Wright, M., Bond, R., & Hurst, M. (2014). A materialistic value orientation is bad for us all: Meta-analytic, experimental, and longitudinal evidence for negative effects on personal well-being, the environment, and children’s learning. Day Conference on Sustainable Lifestyles, June 3.

Dittmar, H. (2014). Why a materialistic value orientation is bad for us all: Meta-analytic, experimental, and longitudinal evidence for psychological processes that undermine personal and social well-being. Distinguished Speakers Series, School of Psychology, University of Cardiff, October 24.


Other conference presentations on this project:

Wright, M., Dittmar, H., & Banerjee, R. (2011). Consumer culture ideals and motives: Links with well-being in childhood and adolescence. Paper presented at the British Psychological Society Social Section Annual Conference.  University of Cambridge, September 6-8.

Dittmar, H., Banerjee, R., & Wright, M. (2012). Children’s internalization of materialistic and appearance ideals is linked to lower well-being. Presentation at the 24th Annual Convention of the Association for Psychological Science, Chicago, US. May 24-27.

Wright, M. L., Dittmar, H. E., & Banerjee, R. A., (2012). Children’s consumer culture ideals and motives: Links with well-being. Paper presented at the 7th International Conference on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology, Roehampton University, UK, July 16-18.

Dittmar, H., Easterbrook, M. J., Banerjee, R., Wright, M., & Hurst, M. (2013). Now we know: You can aspire to be too thin and too rich! The impact of children’s consumer culture ideals and extrinsic motives on their well-being. Paper presented at the 5th International Conference on Self-Determination Theory, Rochester (New York), USA, June 27-30.

Dittmar, H. E., Easterbrook, M. J., Banerjee, R., Wright, M. L., & Hurst, M. (2014). When the pursuit of ‘looking good’ is bad for you: Longitudinal evidence on the links between body ideal values, identity, and well-being in primary and secondary school children. Paper accepted for the 6th Appearance Matters Conference, Centre for Appearance Research, University of the West of England, UK, July 1-2.

Easterbrook, M. J., Dittmar, H. E., Banerjee, R., & Wright, M. L. (2014). “My dad’s car is bigger than your dad’s!” Children’s relative versus absolute socioeconomic status, self-discrepancies, and well-being. Paper accepted for the 17th EASP General Meeting, Amsterdam, July 9-12.