University of Illinois at Chicago

An Investigation of the (Not So) Painful Duality of Envy and Consumer Decision Making

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posted on 2020-08-01, 00:00 authored by Lagnajita Chatterjee
Previous research has suggested that envy can be either malicious or benign in nature. However, the understanding of benign and malicious envy is still in a nascent stage, particularly within the consumption context. Using previous research as foundation, which proposes that along with the experience of inferiority (envy related pain), envy can involve the experience of either positive (benign envy) or negative affect (malicious envy), this work aims to build a more comprehensive picture of experiencing envy and to investigate the associated consumption practices. Firstly, this work identifies and tests the influence of product attractiveness of the envied product. Secondly, this study investigates the moderating effect of deservingness of the envied target. This work also identifies an underlying process for the observed experiences. Finally, consumption consequences are investigated both within and outside the envy related context. This research therefore aims to develop a more holistic understanding of the phenomenon. More specifically, I investigate whether the type of envy experienced (malicious and benign) influences: (1) product choices in related domains, (2) actions directed at the envied person. By doing so, the work contributes not only theoretically to research on envy but also identifies applications within the marketing context.



Gal, David


Gal, David


Department of Managerial Studies

Degree Grantor

University of Illinois at Chicago

Degree Level

  • Doctoral

Degree name

PhD, Doctor of Philosophy

Committee Member

Benét DeBerry-Spence Parker, Jeffrey Duhachek, Adam Motyl, Matt

Submitted date

August 2020

Thesis type



  • en

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