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Extant consumer behavior research has alluded to consumer learning; however, little research exists regarding situated learning and its antecedents with respect to stressful service experiences. Through this research, we qualitatively and quantitatively examine the topic of situated or in situ learning in two cultural contexts—that of the U.S. and China. Results demonstrate the importance of situated learning in dealing with stressful service encounters. The search for possibilities positively impacted situated learning for both U.S. and Chinese consumers. Unlike their U.S. counterparts, Chinese consumers initiated the process of learning long before experiencing the actual service, learned more because of uncertainty of service standards, and stressed the importance of timely decision making as ways to learn and reduce stress. Interestingly, U.S. participants discussed the importance of empathy from service providers, trust, and propensity for upfront feedback in enhancing learning. Theoretical and managerial implications are provided.


Copyright 2013 Taylor & Francis

The author post-print has been archived here with permission from the copyright holder.

"This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Journal of International Consumer Marketing on 2013, available online:"

Publication Title

Journal of International Consumer Marketing

Published Citation

Bose, Mousumi, and Lei Ye. "Antecedents of situated learning in stressful service experiences: A cross-cultural study." Journal of International Consumer Marketing 25.4 (2013): 219-233.



Peer Reviewed