Disorder and Downsizing

<jats:title>Abstract/jats:title <jats:p>The consequences of overconsumption and the recent popularity of simple living point to consumer interest in reducing belongings. They also raise an interesting question—what is a useful approach to downsizing and decluttering? We investigate how dis/order (messy vs. tidy items) affects downsizing and find, across nine focal studies, that (a) consumers retain fewer items when choosing from a disordered set because (b) order facilitates the comparisons within category that underlie the tendency to retain items. The impact of dis/order is altered by consumers’ comparison tendencies, waste aversion, and decision strategy (selection vs. rejection), which serve as theoretically and pragmatically relevant moderators. Though consumers’ lay beliefs favor rejecting from order (i.e., choosing what to get rid of from tidy items), our findings point to the usefulness of selecting from disorder (i.e., choosing what to keep from messy items) as a downsizing strategy. Together, this research has implications for consumer downsizing activities, the burgeoning home organization and storage industries, as well as sustainability./jats:p

This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in 'Journal of Consumer Research' following peer review. The version of record [Ross, G.R., Meloy, M.G., and Bolton, L.E. (2020). Disorder and Downsizing. Journal of Consumer Research 47, 959–977.] is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1093/jcr/ucaa051.



Work Title Disorder and Downsizing
Open Access
  1. Gretchen R Ross
  2. Margaret G Meloy
  3. Lisa E Bolton
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Article
  1. Oxford University Press (OUP)
Publication Date October 14, 2020
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
  1. 10.1093/jcr/ucaa051
  1. Journal of Consumer Research
Deposited September 09, 2021




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Work History

Version 1

  • Created
  • Added Ross+Meloy+and+Bolton+-+Disorder+and+Downsizing+-+2020+-+Journal+of+Consumer+Research+pre-press-1.pdf
  • Added Creator Gretchen R Ross
  • Added Creator Margaret G Meloy
  • Added Creator Lisa E Bolton
  • Published
  • Updated
  • Updated