Social Change


Social Change: Macro, Meso, Micro Perspectives, Special issue of Journal of Social Marketing, Edited by Marie-Louise Fry and Linda Brennan; Deadline 10 Apr 2015



Contemporary social marketing thought argues for a need to expand beyond individualised behaviour change, towards consideration of behaviour change as occurring within a broader market system (Lefebvre, 2012; Fry, 2014; Wymer, 2011; Szmigin et al., 2011; French, et al., 2012; Donovan, 2011 ). Implicitly, a market systems approach draws attention to the capability of social marketers to shape markets, and critically views behaviour as influenced by social and cultural dimensions of society. Viewing behaviour change within a ‘market-based behavioural’ framework leverages up-stream (macro), mid-stream (meso), as well as downstream (micro) social marketing activities. Within this broader framework, governments, organisations and societies act as participants in social change alongside the individuals that are affected by the social issue. Critically, this viewpoint allows for a broadening of the theoretical and practical scope for developing social marketing solutions.

Yet, social change is a complex phenomenon. Negotiating social change at macro, meso and micro levels requires adaptation of social marketing strategies, thinking, and audience motivations. As Brennan et al (2014: 173) argue it is imperative that social marketers consider the trade-offs that must be made in the achievement of social change goals, and importantly that social marketers must learn how to work collaboratively alongside governments rather than in competition with them. A market-based behavioural framework directs attention to the potential for mid-stream thinking, through design architecture, to disrupt and recreate contexts and structures to facilitate the sociality of new habits and behaviours. This special issue actively seeks to direct attention to the complexities and capabilities of creating social change at macro, meso and micro levels within a market-based behavioural change framework. It is not enough to create behaviour change, but it is crucial that every effort is made to sustain behaviour change in the long term.

These themes inform this special issue of the Journal of Social Marketing in association with the 2014 SOCIAL MARKETING@ANZMAC conference. This call for papers invites the submission of high quality empirical and conceptual work that advances theory, research, and management in social marketing. Whilst manuscripts that conceptualise and test new concepts and theories are strongly encouraged, high quality conceptual papers will also be considered. Manuscripts must address and integrate the special issue theme: Macro, meso, micro perspectives to social change.

Authors of a selection of the highest quality conference papers from the 2014 SOCIAL MARKETING@ANZMAC conference will be invited to submit full papers for this special issue. In addition, other high quality manuscripts not associated with the conference, yet address the special theme, will also be considered. Manuscript submissions examining, but not restricted to the following topics are encouraged:

  • Sustaining behaviour change
  • Macro, meso, micro perspectives to creating social change
  • Advancing theory beyond typical models (e.g.: Theory of Planned Behaviour, Health Belief Model)
  • Advancing practice of social change
  • Integrating social change across macro, meso and micro levels
  • Advancing social marketing integrating theory from other disciplines to inform new perspectives

The closing date for submission is 10 April, 2015 for publication in Volume 6, Issue 4, 2016.


Manuscripts submitted to this special issue must strictly follow the guidelines for the Journal of Social Marketing; available at

Manuscripts should be submitted online using the Journal of Social Marketing ScholarOne site ( New users are required to create an account. If you have previously registered with another journal on ScholarOne Manuscripts but wish to submit to Journal of Social Marketing, you will need to create an author account on Journal of Social Marketing to do so. You can use the same username and password.

When submitting please select the ‘Social Change: Macro, Meso, Micro Perspectives” issue rather than the regular issue. Submitted papers should not have been previously published, nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere.

If you have any queries you can direct these to the guest editors:

Informal queries regarding guest editors’ expectations or the suitability of specific research topics should be directed to the Special Issue Editors, Dr Marie-Louise Fry: and Profession Linda Brennan:


Brennan, L. Binney, W., Parker, L., T Aleti Watne, Nguyen, D. (2014), Behaviour Change Models: Theory and Application for Social Marketing, Edward Elgar Publishing: Cheltenham UK.

Donovan, R. (2011), “Social marketing’s mythunderstandings”, Journal of Social Marketing, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 8-16.

French, J., Spotswood, F., Tapp, A. and Stead, M. (2012), “Some reasonable but uncomfortable questions about social marketing”, Journal of Social Marketing, Vol. 2 No. 3, pp. 163-175.

Fry, M.L. (2014), Rethinking social marketing: Towards a sociality of consumption’, Journal of Social Marketing(in press).

Lefebvre, C. (2012), “Transformative social marketing: Co-creating the social marketing discipline and brand”, Journal of Social Marketing, Vol.2 No.2, pp.118-129.

Szmigin, I., Bengry-Howell, A., Griffin, C., Hackley, C. and Mistral, W. (2011), “Social marketing, individual responsibility and the “culture of intoxication””, European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 45 No. 5, pp. 759-79.

Wymer, W. (2011), “Developing more effective social marketing strategies”, Journal of Social Marketing, Vol. 1 No. 1, pp. 17-31.