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Brent McFerran

Professor, Marketing

W.J. VanDusen Professor

Area Coordinator, Marketing


Room: SGL 3265

Phone: 778.782.5214



BCom (University of Manitoba), PhD (University of British Columbia)


Brent McFerran is W.J. VanDusen Professor of Marketing. His research examines social and interpersonal influences in consumer behavior, as well as moral judgments and behavior. 

His research has been published in leading outlets in both marketing and psychology, and he was awarded the Society for Consumer Psychology's Early Career Contribution Award. He was also previously named a Scholar (2023) and a Young Scholar (2017) by the Marketing Science Institute. He is an Associate Editor at Journal of Consumer Research and Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, and was previously at Journal of Consumer Psychology. He currently serves on the editorial review boards of Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Consumer Psychology, Journal of Retailing, and Marketing Letters

He holds a B.Comm(Hons.) from the University of Manitoba and a Ph.D from the University of British Columbia.

For more information, CV, etc., see

Research Interests

Social and interpersonal influences; Moral psychology and prosocial behaviour.

Selected Publications

articles and reports

Allard, T., & McFerran, B. (2021). Ethical Branding in A Divided World: How Political Orientation Motivates Reactions to Marketplace Transgressions. Journal of Consumer Psychology.

Olson, J. G., McFerran, B., Morales, A. C., & Dahl, D. W. (2021). How income shapes moral judgments of prosocial behavior. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 38(1), 120-135.

Hamby, A., McFerran, B., & Dahl, D. W. (2021). Above the Scam: Moral Elevation Reduces Gullibility. Journal of Consumer Psychology.

Campbell, C., Sands, S., Treen, E., & McFerran, B. (2021). Fleeting, But Not Forgotten: Ephemerality as a Means to Increase Recall of Advertising. Journal of Interactive Marketing.

Liu, P. J., McFerran, B., & Haws, K. L. (2020). Mindful Matching: Ordinal Versus Nominal Attributes. Journal of Marketing Research, 57(1), 134-155.

McFerran, B., Moore, S. G., & Packard, G. (2019). How should companies talk to customers online? MIT Sloan Management Review, 60(2), 68-71.

Haws, K. L., McFerran, B., & Liu, P. (2019, September). 'I'll have what she's having' - how and why we copy the choices of others. Conversation.

Hagen, L., Krishna, A., & McFerran, B. (2019). Outsourcing responsibility for indulgent food consumption to prevent negative affect. Journal of the Association for Consumer Research.

Packard, G., Moore, S. G., & McFerran, B. (2018). (I'm) happy to help (you): The impact of personal pronoun use in customer-firm interactions. Journal of Marketing Research, 55(4), 541-555.

Ahuvia, A., Garg, N., Batra, R., McFerran, B., & De Diesbach, P. B. L. (2018). Pride of ownership: An identity-based model. Journal of the Association for Consumer Research, 3(2), 216-228.

Karnani, A., McFerran, B., & Mukhopadhyay, A. (2017). Corporate Leanwashing and Consumer Beliefs About Obesity. Current Nutrition Reports, 6(3), 206-211.

Haws, K. L., McFerran, B., & Redden, J. P. (2017). The satiating effect of pricing: The influence of price on enjoyment over time. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 27(3), 341-346.

Wang, W., Krishna, A., & McFerran, B. (2017). Turning off the lights: Consumers' environmental efforts depend on visible efforts of firms. Journal of Marketing Research, 54(3), 478-494.

Moore, S. G., & McFerran, B. (2017). She said, she said: Differential interpersonal similarities predict unique linguistic mimicry in online word of mouth. Journal of the Association for Consumer Research, 2(2), 229-245.

Kristofferson, K., Mcferran, B., Morales, A. C., & Dahl, D. W. (2017). The dark side of scarcity promotions: How exposure to limited-quantity promotions can induce aggression. Journal of Consumer Research, 43(5), 683-706.

Hagen, L., Krishna, A., & McFerran, B. (2016). Rejecting responsibility: Low physical involvement in obtaining food promotes unhealthy eating. Journal of Marketing Research.

Karnani, A., McFerran, B., & Mukhopadhyay, A. (2016). The obesity crisis as market failure: An analysis of systemic causes and corrective mechanisms. Journal of the Association for Consumer Research, 1(3), 445-470.

Olson, J. G., McFerran, B., Morales, A. C., & Dahl, D. W. (2016). Wealth and welfare: Divergent moral reactions to ethical consumer choices. Journal of Consumer Research, 42(6), 879-896.

Lin, L., & McFerran, B. (2016). The (ironic) dove effect: Use of acceptance cues for larger body types increases unhealthy behaviors. Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, 35(1), 76-90.

McFerran, B., & Argo, J. J. (2014). The entourage effect. Journal of Consumer Research, 40(5), 871-884.

McFerran, B., Aquino, K., & Tracy, J. L. (2014). Evidence for two facets of pride in consumption: Findings from luxury brands. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 24(4), 455-471.

Karnani, A., McFerran, B., & Mukhopadhyay, A. (2014). Leanwashing: A hidden factor in the obesity crisis. California Management Review, 56(4), 5-30.

Gu, J., Mcferran, B., Aquino, K., & Kim, T. G. (2014). What makes affirmative action-based hiring decisions seem (un)fair? A test of an ideological explanation for fairness judgments. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 35(5), 722-745.

McFerran, B., & Mukhopadhyay, A. (2013). Lay Theories of Obesity Predict Actual Body Mass. Psychological Science, 24(8), 1428-1436.

Aquino, K., McFerran, B., & Laven, M. (2011). Moral Identity and the Experience of Moral Elevation in Response to Acts of Uncommon Goodness. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 100(4), 703-718.

McFerran, B., Dahl, D. W., Gorn, G. J., & Honea, H. (2010). Motivational determinants of transportation into marketing narratives. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 20(3), 306-316.

McFerran, B., Dahl, D. W., Fitzsimons, G. J., & Morales, A. C. (2010). Might an overweight waitress make you eat more? How the body type of others is sufficient to alter our food consumption. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 20(2), 146-151.

McFerran, B., Dahl, D. W., Fitzsimons, G. J., & Morales, A. C. (2010). I'll have what she's having: Effects of social influence and body type on the food choices of others. Journal of Consumer Research, 36(6), 915-926.

McFerran, B., Aquino, K., & Duffy, M. (2010). How personality and moral identity relate to individuals' ethical ideology. Business Ethics Quarterly, 20(1), 35-56.

Freeman, D., Aquino, K., & McFerran, B. (2009). Overcoming beneficiary race as an impediment to charitable donations: Social dominance orientation, the experience of moral elevation, and donation behavior. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 35(1), 72-84.

books chapters and monographs

Olson, J. G., Morales, A. C., & Dahl, D. W. (2019). Identity-based perceptions of others’ consumption choices. In Reed II, A., & Forehand, M. (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Identity Theory in Marketing (pp. 448-461). Edward Elgar Publishing (UK).

McFerran, B. (2015). "Social Norms, Beliefs, and Health". In Roberto, C. A., & Kawachi, I. (Eds.), Behavioral Economics and Public Health (pp. 133-161). Oxford University Press.

McFerran, B., Dahl, D. W., Fitzsimons, G. J., & Morales, A. C. (2015). How the body type of others impacts our food consumption. In Batra, R., Keller, P. A., Strecher, V. J., Batra, R., Keller, P. A., & Strecher, V. J. (Eds.), Leveraging Consumer Psychology for Effective Health Communications: The Obesity Challenge. Taylor & Francis Inc..