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Dr Cristina Galalae

Profile summary

Professional biography

I joined the Open University Business School in July 2024 as Senior Lecturer in Marketing. Previously, I held positions at Coventry University and at the University of Leicester, where I also acted as Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion for the University of Leicester School of Business. I have been a Senior Fellow of Higher Education since 2018.

I have completed my doctoral formative journey at the University of Texas at Austin (USA) as a Fulbright scholar, the University of Manchester (UK), as a European Social Fund grantee, and at the Bucharest Academy of Economics (Romania), which awarded me a Ph.D. in International Business in 2015. I have pursued my interest in higher education via a certificate in Higher Education granted by Coventry University in 2016, and my passion for philosophy, via a certificate in Metaphysics, Philosophy of Language and Ethics awarded by Cambridge University in 2023. 

In my research, I draw on theories originated in anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, philosophy, international relations and politics. Methodologically, I follow an interpretive/hermeneutic (qualitative) approach. Through my work, I engage and contribute to scholarship in the areas of consumer culture theory and transformative consumer research.

Research interests

My research is positioned at the intersection of consumer behaviour, multicultural marketing, and critical diversity scholarship. A significant part of my work explores the experiences of marginalised consumers, who either feel unable or unwilling to identify with the consumer market, and the mechanisms through which markets excludes some consumers, with the view to inform change.

I engage with consumers and markets in contexts such as Britain, the United States, Romania, Lebanon, etc. on a variety of topics such as: barriers for multicultural marketplace wellbeing, inclusive branding, how self-colonising narratives perpetuate societal exclusion, representations of diversity in advertising and media, motivations for culturally diverse consumption.

My research program informs strategies for the reduction of inequalities, bringing peace and justice, and enabling the development of stronger institutions, in alignment with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. I also use my expertise to engage in cross-disciplinary research, including projects on how the discourse on equality, diversity and inclusion is embedded in business school education, digital marketing, and digital inclusion in the workplace.

My work received external funding, including from the Academy of Marketing, the Association for Consumer Research, the British Academy, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Romanian Ministry of Education, Innovation and Digitalization.

My expertise enables me to supervise doctoral students with various interests; I have supervised to completion several Ph.D. students. I welcome enquiries from prospective PhD students interested in exploring topics / perspectives such as:

  • Consumer culture theory
  • Consumer wellbeing
  • Marketing ethics
  • Transformative consumer research
  • Diversity in the marketplace
  • Inclusive marketing  
  • Multicultural marketplaces
  • Inclusion in and through marketing activities
  • Acculturation studies
  • Experiential consumption
  • Inclusion and exclusion in the marketplace
  • Consumer identities
  • Inclusion and exclusion via digital technologies

Teaching interests

As a student and as a teacher, I have had the opportunity to experience first-hand diverse education systems in the UK, US, Belgium, France, Denmark, South Africa, and Romania. My explorations of different learning and teaching approaches and my engagement with pedagogical scholarship led me to adopting a critical pedagogy approach, inspired by Paulo Freire and by Jacques Rancière.

Throughout the past 14 years, I had the opportunity of teaching various modules at Ph.D., MBA, Postgraduate and Undergraduate level, including: (1) Marketing Ethics and Society (UG); (2) Managing International Marketing Communications, Brand and Relationships (MBA); (3) Market Intelligence, Data Analysis and Research Methods (PG); (4) Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in Research (Ph.D.); (5) Theory Building (Ph.D.); (6) Globalisation and Emerging Markets; (7) Ethical Foundations of International Marketing (PG); (8) Consumers, Brands and Communications (PG); (9) Qualitative Data Analysis Methods, Advanced Training for Ph.D. Students (Ph.D.); (10) Principles of Marketing (UG); (11) Marketing Management (PG); (12) Business Simulation (MBA); (13) Multicultural Marketing and the Multicultural Marketplace (UG); (14) Doing business across borders (UG); (15) Global Marketing (UG). Additionally, I had the privilege of supervising doctoral students, along with undergraduate, postgraduate and MBA dissertations.

I have been a Senior Fellow of Higher Education since 2018; I am interested to continue developing as an educator and in supporting others in their growth.

External collaborations

I forge strong educational links with Universities in the UK and abroad (e.g., Iowa State University, USA, IESEG France, University of Molise, Italy, Queen Mary University, UK, Aarhus University, Denmark, California State University, USA) and I engage recurrently with marketing practitioners working in organisations in Romania, as well as in the UK and USA.

The impact of my work with the Multicultural Marketplaces Network was recognised by the 2020 Women in Marketing ‘Marketing Scientist’ Award. In 2023, one of our papers published in the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing was adopted into the National Diversity Council member toolkit (USA). One year later, the paper was awarded the Thomas C. Kinnear/Journal of Public Policy & Marketing Award which annually recognizes the article that has made the most significant contribution to the understanding of marketing and public policy issues.


Opportunities for promoting societal inclusion through higher education cultural and creative industries courses: Evidence from UK business schools (2024-02)
Whitehouse, Sophie and Galalae, Cristina
Industry and Higher Education, 38(1) (pp. 92-96)

The Role of War-related Marketing Activism Actions in Community Resilience: from the Ground in Ukraine (2024)
Kipnis, Eva; Pysarenko, Nataliia; Galalae, Cristina; Mari, Carlo; Martín Ruiz, Verónica and Vorster, Lizette
Journal of Public Policy& Marketing ((Early access))

A Multicontextual Lens on Racism and Discrimination in the Multicultural Marketplace (2023-01)
Galalae, Cristina; Kipnis, Eva; Cui, Charles C.; Johnson, Emma; Licsandru, Tana; Vorster, Lizette; Demangeot, Catherine; Kearney, Shauna; Mari, Carlo; Martín Ruiz, Verónica; Pullig, Chris and Lindsey-Warren, Tyrha M.
Journal of the Association for Consumer Research, 8(1)

Institutionalizing Diversity-and-Inclusion-Engaged Marketing for Multicultural Marketplace Well-Being (2021-04)
Kipnis, Eva; Demangeot, Catherine; Pullig, Chris; Cross, Samantha N. N.; Chi Cui, Charles; Galalae, Cristina; Kearney, Shauna; Cristina Licsandru, Tana; Mari, Carlo; Martín Ruiz, Verónica; Swanepoel, Samantha; Vorster, Lizette and Williams, Jerome D.
Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 40(2) (pp. 143-164)

Christmas markets – marketplace icon (2020-08)
Broeckerhoff, Aurélie and Galalae, Cristina
Consumption Markets & Culture, 25(1) (pp. 79-90)

Reassessing positive dispositions for the consumption of products and services with different cultural meanings: A motivational perspective (2020-07)
Galalae, Cristina; Kipnis, Eva and Demangeot, Catherine
Journal of Business Research, 115 (pp. 160-173)

Constructing a bridge to multicultural marketplace well-being: A consumer-centered framework for marketer action (2019-07)
Demangeot, Catherine; Kipnis, Eva; Pullig, Chris; Cross, Samantha N. N.; Emontspool, Julie; Galalae, Cristina; Grier, Sonya A.; Rosenbaum, Mark S. and Best, Susy F.
Journal of Business Research, 100 (pp. 339-353)

Culinary Communication Practices: The Role of Retail Spaces in Producing Field-Specific Cultural Capital (2019-04-10)
Galalae, Cristina; Emontspool, Julie and Omidvar, Omid
In: Bajde, Domen; Kjeldgaard, Dannie and Belk, Russell W. eds. Consumer Culture Theory. Research in Consumer Behaviour
ISBN : 978-1-78754-285-3 | Publisher : Emerald Publishing Limited