Consumers, Brands, and the Mandate for Accountability


Today, it’s not enough for a brand to signify product quality or customer focus. Consumers want brands to stand for something beyond the products or services they sell.  Widely differing campaigns like Nike’s Colin Kaepernick ad campaign, Warby Parker’s “Buy a Pair, Give a Pair program,” and Walmart’s step back from gun and ammunition sales all respond to the same mandate: Consumers expect companies to act like “citizens of the world.”

This conference will explore the many facets of brand decision making in this world of accountability. What does it mean for marketers and brands when companies embrace transparency, sustainability, and authenticity -- in addition to shareholder value --  as part of their corporate purpose?

We will address questions like:

  • What do we know about the brand benefits of “taking a stand”? What are the risks and uncertainties?
  • How have firms responded to consumer demands, and how have they communicated those actions? What comes across as authentic and what as “mere marketing”? 
  • How do consumers communicate that they are responsible citizens through their brands? What are effects on brand loyalty and purchase behavior?
  • How do brand strategy decisions differ for B2C and B2B marketers? 

This conference is for insights and marketing research leaders



Please note that this is a rough agenda for planning purposes only. All times are subject to change.

6:30 – 8:00 p.m. Welcome Reception
8:30 – 9:00 a.m. Registration and Networking Breakfast
9:00 – 9:30 Welcome and Opening Remarks
9:30 – 9:55 Presentation to be Announced
9:55 – 10:20 Presentation to be Announced
10:20 – 10:45 Presentation to be Announced
10:45 – 11:15 Networking Break
11:15 – 11:40 Presentation to be Announced
11:40 – 12:05 p.m. Presentation to be Announced
12:05 – 12:30 Presentation to be Announced
12:30 – 1:45 Lunch
1:45 – 2:10 Presentation to be Announced
2:10 – 2:35 Presentation to be Announced
2:35 – 3:00 Presentation to be Announced
3:00 – 3:30 Networking Break
3:30 – 3:55 Presentation to be Announced
3:55 – 4:20 Presentation to be Announced
4:20 – 4:45 Presentation to be Announced
4:45 – 5:15 Wrap Up


Barbara Kahn

University of Pennsylvania and Executive Director, Marketing Science Institute

Carey Morewedge

Boston University

View Bio

Cheryl Cramer Toto

CEO, Marketing Science Institute

Barbara Kahn

Carey Morewedge

Carey K. Morewedge is Professor of Marketing and Everett W. Lord Distinguished Faculty Scholar at the Boston University Questrom School of Business. His research examines how higher order cognitive processes such as memory, attention, and comparison influence human judgment and decision making. He has published more than 40 articles and chapters in top peer-reviewed journals including Science, Trends in Cognitive Sciences, Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, Journal of Marketing Research, Management Science, and Psychological Science. He has been recognized as one of the Top 40 Under 40 Most Outstanding M.B.A. Professors by Poets and Quants, won an award for the Most Theoretically Innovative Article of the Year from the Society of Personality and Social Psychology, and received an Ideas of the Year Award from the New York Times. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. in social psychology from Harvard University and his B.A. from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Cheryl Cramer Toto


There are many hotels near the conference venue offering competitive rates. We recommend Hotel Commonwealth or the Residence Inn Back Bay, both or which are located one mile from the venue. 

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