Neighbors as Strangers or Friends? How Consumer’s Self-Construal Affects the Weight of Neighbor Information in Residence Decisions

Dr. Linying (Sophie) FAN
Assistant Professor, Department of Marketing,
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

Date: 15 January 2024 (Monday)
Time: 10:30 am to 12:00 pm
Venue: E22-G015
Host: Prof. Fangyuan CHEN, Associate Professor in Marketing
Online registration:


Although everyone must make decisions about where to live, we know little about how consumers perceive social interactions with neighbors or how information about neighbors is incorporated into residence decisions. The current research aims to investigate the role of consumer’s self-construal on the weight of neighbor information in residence choices. Seven studies, using lab experiments, online surveys, and archival data, demonstrate that independent consumers, compared to their interdependent peers, give more weight to neighbor information when making residence choices. The effect of self-construal on neighbor consideration is driven by independent consumers’ stronger intention to be socially close with neighbors, which leads them to seek similar neighbors since similarity implies potential social closeness. We also use an archival dataset to validate a macro-level consequence of the proposed effect.



Linying (Sophie) Fan is an assistant professor of marketing at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. Her research focuses on how consumers’ judgments and decisions are influenced by socioeconomic factors, interpersonal concerns, and psychological resources. Dr. Fan’s research has been published on top-tier academic journals, such as the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, and the Journal of Association for Consumer Research.

 All are welcome!