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Appears in Collections:Marketing and Retail Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Retailing in Europe: 20 years on
Author(s): Burt, Steven
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Keywords: Retail trade Europe
European Union Commerce
Issue Date: Feb-2010
Date Deposited: 14-Apr-2010
Citation: Burt S (2010) Retailing in Europe: 20 years on. International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, 20 (1), pp. 9-27.
Abstract: “We are all familiar with the modern-day manager’s mantra that we live in times of great and constant change… We perceive our environment to be in constant flux because we only notice the things that do change ….Sure, important changes have taken place recently, but the truth is that stability and continuity also form the basis of our experience. In fact change has no meaning unless it is juxtaposed against continuity.” Huy & Minzberg (2003) This quote, paraphrased from a Sloan Management Review article on different types of change, makes an important observation – that change is inherently noticeable and that change is only change because of how it contrasts with continuity or stability. When looking back over the past twenty years of European retailing it is almost inevitable that we look for dramatic change, for in drama we have the “best” stories. There are numerous ways to look at (or look for) change, including the above, but the inherent point within the Huy and Minzberg article is that alongside change we have evolution and development, and perhaps this is often overlooked as a type of change. This paper starts by placing European retailing in context, with a brief reminder of the environmental setting(s) within which retailers in Europe operate. Change is then explored through one highly visible dimension – the scale of retail organisations - before turning to three broadly based areas of change which, it is argued, represent important underlying themes in European retailing. The intention is to focus on themes, rather than events, to provide a more complete understanding of how retailing in Europe has changes over the past twenty years.
DOI Link: 10.1080/09593960903497773
Rights: Published in International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research by Taylor & Francis (Routledge).; This is an electronic version of an article published in International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, Volume 20, Issue 1, February 2010, pp. 9 - 27. International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research is available online at:

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