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The contextual understandings of eating: A practice theoretical approach to Swedish business travellers’ meals
Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Institutionen för kost- och måltidsvetenskap.ORCID-id: 0000-0002-8179-4628
Umeå universitet, Samhällsvetenskapliga fakulteten, Institutionen för kost- och måltidsvetenskap.
2021 (Engelska)Ingår i: International Journal of Gastronomy and Food Science, ISSN 1878-450X, E-ISSN 1878-4518, Vol. 24, artikel-id 100327Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat) Published
Abstract [en]

Business travellers are a significant component of the hospitality industry and range from the managerial to the operational level of the firms they work for. These different positions come with different contextualised reasons for engaging in eating situations or meals when travelling. Research has begun to map out the activities related to those meals, although the sense-making and organisational aspects are still largely unexplored. Thus, this article aims to elucidate the organisation of business travellers’ meal practices. The study is theoretically framed within Schatzki’s social practice theory and semi-structured interviews were conducted with nine business travellers of different ages, working in different sectors, and at different levels within their firms. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using thematic analysis. It was found that the meals were organised around, and understood through, two themes; significant social interactions and meaningful material properties, that was related to the teleoaffective, organising, structure of the practice. The interactions described in the first theme were mainly driven by how the interactions were perceived within the group the business traveller represented, as well as interactions between the group and the restaurant staff. Moreover, business travellers could find themselves in the role of acting both as a host and a guest within the same context. In the second theme, the material properties that influenced the understanding, and thus the sensemaking of the meal were focused on the physical environment, such as the interior of the restaurant, the food and drinks, as well as the economic circumstances of eating out. As illustrated through business travellers’ meals, the study mainly contributes to our understanding of the contextuality of meals as contexts and how those are experienced as good meals.

Ort, förlag, år, upplaga, sidor
Elsevier, 2021. Vol. 24, artikel-id 100327
Nyckelord [en]
Meal practice, Meal science, Business travel, Sociology of food, Social practice theory
Nationell ämneskategori
Övrig annan samhällsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-173866DOI: 10.1016/j.ijgfs.2021.100327ISI: 000657302200014Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85106349804OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-173866DiVA, id: diva2:1456547
Forskningsfinansiär
Besöksnäringens forsknings- och utvecklingsfond (BFUF)
Anmärkning

Previously included in thesis in manuscript form.

Tillgänglig från: 2020-08-05 Skapad: 2020-08-05 Senast uppdaterad: 2021-09-16Bibliografiskt granskad
Ingår i avhandling
1. Eat, Meet, Fly, Repeat: the contextuality of business travellers’ meals
Öppna denna publikation i ny flik eller fönster >>Eat, Meet, Fly, Repeat: the contextuality of business travellers’ meals
2020 (Engelska)Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
Abstract [en]

Meals are an important part of everyday life, both for the persons who engage in them and for the industry that makes them. For business travellers, meals are engaged in differently when they are travelling compared when they are home. Tens of millions of meals are engaged in each year by persons who are conducting business trips. Even though this group of people make up the largest group of customers for the Swedish hotels, research into their meals are virtually non-existent.

The aim of this thesis is to extend and deepen the knowledge about business travellers’ meals. This aim is approached by using both quantitative and qualitative methods, through a survey study and an interview study.

The results were then interpreted thought a practice theoretical framework. The results indicate that the meals of business travellers are contextual in nature and that their organisation is influenced by the practice bundle currently carried on by the business traveller. The meal is, furthermore, understood as part of practice-arrangement mesh, where the material arrangement conditions the facilitation of good meals. The meals of business travellers’ contain different ends than meals engaged in with friends and family, as such, a meal in which food of inadequate quality is served in an loud environment making the business traveller change behaviour could still be perceived as good due to the experiences of the business traveller’s clients.

The thesis proposes that the industry should engage more with their customers in order to accumulate knowledge of the different ends existing in their meal practice as a way of facilitating good meals. It does, furthermore, contribute to the theory on meals and eating out as it brings about a new way to conceive of good meals. It has also, as it is basic research, opened up for future inquiry into the meals of business travellers.

Ort, förlag, år, upplaga, sidor
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2020. s. 65
Nyckelord
Meal science, meal practice, business travel, social practice theory
Nationell ämneskategori
Övrig annan samhällsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-173867 (URN)978-91-7855-322-8 (ISBN)978-91-7855-323-5 (ISBN)
Disputation
2020-09-04, Triple Helix, Universitetsledningshuset, Umeå Universitet, Umeå, 13:00 (Svenska)
Opponent
Handledare
Tillgänglig från: 2020-08-17 Skapad: 2020-08-05 Senast uppdaterad: 2020-08-11Bibliografiskt granskad

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