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Grenfell, COVID-19 and digital technology

Grenfell and beyond: Exploring differences in digital technology interactions between residents and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea council for well-being during Covid-19 

This project investigates the use of digital technologies and its perceived implications for residents’ sense of well-being during the Covid-19 pandemic. Specifically, we focus on the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and its residents, considering potential differences in experiences between residents within 500 metres of Grenfell Tower and other council residents. This project is restricted on those residents who have access to the Internet and will explore the use of digital technologies for sharing information between councils and residents, accessing council services, and connecting with other residents.

The aims of this project are:

  • To understand how the council engages its residents through digital technologies, and how it supports residents’ access to, and capability for using, digital technologies.
  • To understand residents’ access to, and expectations and experiences of using, digital technologies during Covid-19 to interact with the council about Covid-19, Grenfell and other council-relevant topics.


Meet the Principal Investigator(s) for the project

Professor Danae Manika - Danae Manika is Professor of Marketing and Associate Head at Brunel Business School, Brunel University London. Previously, she held academic appointments at Newcastle University, Queen Mary University of London, Durham University and the University of Texas at Austin. She served as Academic Group Head of Newcastle University London campus, Deputy Director of Research (NU London), and Research & Impact Lead of Marketing, Operations and Systems Group at Newcastle University Business School; and as Director of Marketing Interactions & Consumer Behaviour research group and Programme Director for the BSc in Marketing and Management at the School of Business and Management at Queen Mary University of London. She obtained a Ph.D and a M.A. in Advertising from the University of Texas at Austin, TX, USA and a B.A. Honours in Marketing from University of Stirling, UK. Prof. Manika has also worked as an Account Planning Intern in advertising agencies such as Latinworks in Austin, TX, and DDB in New York. Using an interdisciplinary approach, blending the lines between marketing, advertising and psychology her research aims to answer a fundamental marketing research question: How to diminish the knowledge-behaviour gap? Particularly, her research focuses on effective message construction for behaviour change. She takes an information processing approach, which identifies, classifies and examines cognitive (e.g., knowledge, confidence, trust, values) and affective (e.g., pride, fear, disgust) factors that influence individuals’/consumers’/employees’ decisions and choices after exposure to campaigns/messages/interventions, and translate knowledge acquisition to behaviour change/formation. Prof. Manika is currently serving as Associate Editor (AE) for Business & Society and the Journal of Current Issues and Research in Advertising, while in the past she was AE for the Journal of Marketing Management (2017-21). She is also currently on the Editorial Review Boards of: Journal of Business Ethics,Technological Forecasting & Social Change, and Journal of Marketing Management; and has served in the past and currently as a guest editor across journals (Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Business Research, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Macromarketing, Journal of Marketing Management, Technological Forecasting and Social Change). Prof. Manika also served as Track 1 Chair for the 2021 Transformative Consumer Research conference (USA). She often engages in research projects that require collaborations with other disciplines such as medicine, engineering and geography; and her research has been supported by £284,000+ of funding (e.g., CRUK, EPSRC/Innovate UK, RED, and Arrow/ERDF). She also strongly believes in the interplay and interdependence of academia, government, business and society and hence she is often involved in various consultancies (e.g., Harrow Council, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council, RECOUP, Global Action Plan, Texas Comprehensive Cancer Control Coalition), in line with her research (i.e., effective message construction for behaviour change) with the aim of linking theory and practice, which have led to the development of real-world research impact. Prof. Manika is also currently Visiting Professor of Marketing at Newcastle University Business School, Newcastle University and at the School of Business and Management at Queen Mary University of London. She previously held a Visiting Research Scholar position at the Centre of Risk Management and Insurance Research at McCombs Business School, University of Texas at Austin, TX, USA.

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Partnering with confidence

Organisations interested in our research can partner with us with confidence backed by an external and independent benchmark: The Knowledge Exchange Framework. Read more.

Project last modified 27/10/2021