Keeping up with the ‘New Normal’


Consumption, Production and Entrepreneurship in the time of Coronavirus, Edited book; Abstract deadline 21 Sep 2020

POSTING TYPE: Calls: Other

Author: Paul Harrison

Keeping up with the ‘New Normal’. Consumption, Production and Entrepreneurship in the time of Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2)

Expressions of Interest: Book Chapters


  • Elena Gallitto, University of Ottawa (
  • Marta Massi, Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (
  • Paul Harrison, Deakin University (

We are currently calling for contributions to our book titled Keeping up with the ‘New Normal’. Consumption, Production and Entrepreneurship in the time of Coronavirus to be published by Palgrave MacMillan (Palgrave).

A contract has been secured with Palgrave and we are now ready to move to the next phase of the publication process. Palgrave have asked for the completed manuscript by December 2020. We are now calling expressions of interest from potential authors to contribute to this important publication.

Like all things related to Covid-19, the timeframe is tight, with initial abstracts required by 21 September 2020 (no later than 23:59GMT).

Please read the full document for information on submitting a potential chapter.

Book Overview

The purpose of this book is to examine the impact that the recent COVID-19 crisis is having on consumer behaviour and business. The recent outbreak of the novel Coronavirus (SARSCoV- 2; COVID-19) around the world has had profound repercussions on individuals’ lives, with significant consequences on several aspects of the production and consumption of goods and services. Schools, universities, restaurants and, non-essential services have been shutting down, while parents have been asked to choose between “meeting the expectations to work remotely” and educating their children at home (Molokhia, 2020). From doing the grocery shopping online to teleworking, lives have irrevocably changed. All in-person events, including concerts and conferences, have either been cancelled or postponed, while travel bans imposed by governments have greatly restricted individual freedom.

Lockdowns, curfews and physical distancing regulations, mandated by many governments, and solicited by numerous campaigns on social media such as #stayhome, have had remarkable implications for consumers and businesses, lastingly transforming the market landscape. Moreover, social media have gained increasing importance during this pandemic, allowing individuals to maintain contact with others while being apart (Depoux et al., 2020). Social media have also become an influential marketing tool as well as an important arena for launching fundraising campaigns in support of the COVID-19 emergency (Cinelli et al, 2020).

Arguably, the COVID-19 outbreak has inexorably changed business operations. All businesses from small businesses to multinational corporations have been forced to change their modus operandi as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. E-commerce has overtaken a large part of the retailing forcing some companies to shut down, also giving rise to other businesses that have seized the opportunity to use online platforms in innovative ways to increment their sales amid the COVID-19 health crisis (Ghose, 2020).

Such drastic changes in lifestyles and the growing uncertainty during these unprecedented times have had an unequivocal impact on consumer behaviour and the global economy. Panic-buying sprees during this pandemic are examples of herd behavior undertaken by individuals in a frantic attempt to control their fear of the unknown (Bonneux and Van Damme, 2006). Such shifts in shoppers’ purchase behaviour have greatly affected retailing. Stockpiling of goods such as hand wipes, hand sanitizer, toilet paper has, in turn, led to overspending, shortage of supplies, and increasing waste (Miri, Roozbeh, Omranirad and Alavian, 2020).

Consumer anxiety has also been fomented by the conflicting messages received by government officials and other sources perceived as “reliable” (Keogh, 2020). In the context of a crisis, the management of signals is crucial to establish and maintain the trust that citizen-consumers have on governments and public health agencies. First, during the emergence of the health crisis, we witnessed many different, and often contradictory messages delivered by institutions. For instance, the images of government leaders wearing medical masks were incongruent with the World Health Organization’s guidelines that masks should only be worn if already positive for COVID-19 (WHO, 2020).

During the COVID-19 outbreak, there has been an overflow of information on the novel coronavirus, which has given rise to a plethora of chatter, impressions, emotional reactions and words replicated by news agencies and social media, thereby leading to “media fatigue” (Dhir, Kaur, Chen, S. and Pallesen, 2019). Similarly, consumers have been bombarded by misleading information about the health risks and consequences of the exposure to the pathogen, mostly derived from previous manifestations of gastrointestinal problems associated with other coronaviruses such as the SARS-Cov2 (Miri, Roozbeh, Omranirad and Alavian, 2020). Such confusion contributed to increased anxiety among the general public, and in turn, led to stockpiling of items such as toilet papers (Laato, Islam, Farooq and Dhir, 2020).

At the same time, the COVID-19 outbreak has disrupted a myriad of sectors, including tourism hospitality, transportation, fashion, arts, and leisure (Kilpatrick et al., 2020). While many companies are struggling to operate, others are taking advantage of this health crisis by capitalizing on the supply of essential services (Knowles, 2020). Going online has become a necessity for individuals and business organizations alike. With athletic and fitness clubs shutting down, online workout applications have seen a surge in new members sign-ups and selling of home fitness equipment has skyrocketed. Similarly, art galleries and museums are now hosting online cultural events and exhibits, increasing worldwide access to creative activities, which might otherwise be out of reach (New York Times, 2020).

Despite its negative effects, the health crisis has also led to the emergence of new entrepreneurship, reimagination of business models, and the digitisation of industries. Several startups have seized the opportunity to promote their business using innovative technology to boost their entrepreneurial potential (Kuckertz, 2020). Similarly, entirely new start-ups have been launched. Start-ups have been providing free or discounted services and products to assist in the crisis, including 3D printing valves for the hospitals, learning courses, as well as platforms for remote teaching and smart working (Knowles, 2020).

Potential chapters could cover a range of topics:

  • Consumption, production and entrepreneurship in the time of Coronavirus
  • Behaviour change and its impact on consumer behaviour and marketing activities, e.g., social distancing, digital delivery of goods and services, panic buying.
  • Effects on manufacturing and access to raw materials, e.g., access to raw materials for health and other products, ethical implications, environmental implications.
  • Exclusion and vulnerability in relation to access to goods and services, e.g., the digital divide, disenfranchised groups missing out on certain products.
  • Industries significantly affected by Covid-19, e.g., manufacturing, arts, entertainment, sport.
  • Communicating complex ideas in the time of Covid-19, e.g., mask wearing, behaviour change, delivery of health programs.
  • Innovation as a result of Covid-19, e.g., apps, use of AI, reimagining core products for new markets, emergence of social media.

Contributing to the book

Each contribution should be between 6,000 to 8,000 words (max) including all references and tables.

Please note the very tight schedule:

  • 21 Sept. 2020 (no later than 23:59GMT) Submission of abstracts
  • October, 2020 Abstract Approval
  • November, 2020 Submission of chapters to the editors
  • November -22 November Internal Review Process
  • 3 November, 2020 Feedback to authors
  • 1 December, 2020 Final submission to the editors

Should you be interested in contributing to this project, please send a 500-word abstract to Elena Gallitto ( by 21 September, 2020. Both conceptual and researchbased contributions are welcome.

Upon receipt of your contribution, we will review it using an internal double-blind review process.

Thank you for your consideration.

We look forward to working with you.

(Full reference list from this overview is available upon request)