I am Deputy Principal and Professor of Retail Studies at the Institute for Retail Studies, University of Stirling, Scotland, UK. I was an undergraduate at the University of Cambridge, and completed my Ph.D at St. David's University College, Lampeter.
I have been professor at Stirling since 1992. I have also been the Head of the Department of Marketing, the Divisions of Marketing and Business and Organisation, the Director of the Institute for Retail Studies and the Dean of the Faculty of Management. I am currently Head of the Stirling Graduate School and Deputy Head of the Stirling Management School.
In 2000-2001 I was Visiting Professor at Florida State University and followed that up by being Visiting Professor at the University of Tennessee in 2006.
I am Editor of the leading European retail journal (The International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, published by Taylor and Francis), and on the editorial boards of several leading marketing and business journals.
In 2002-2004, I was the only academic member of the UK Department of Trade and Industry's Retail Strategy Group. I am Chair of the Scotland's Towns Group for the Centre for Scottish Public Policy (2009 to date), one of two members of IDS Scotland Ltd, the company set up by Scottish Government to oversee Scottish Business Improvement Districts (2009 to date) and an office bearer in the American Collegiate Retailing Association.
In 2001, I was a founding member of the Academy of Marketing's Research Committee and was its Chair from January 2006 to December 2009.
I run a blog on Scottish retail matters (Stirlingretail.com) and am a Black Belt on the Brickmeets click e-commerce site.
A brief introduction and mini cv are available here.
Other Academic Activities
Service Industries Journal Taylor and Francis Member of Editorial Board
Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal Emerald Group Publishing Member of Editorial Board
Journal of Marketing Management Taylor and Francis Member of Editorial Board
Journal of Marketing Channels Taylor and Francis Member of Editorial Board
International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research Taylor and Francis ISSN 0959-3969
European Journal of Marketing Emerald Group Publishing Member of Editorial Board
My research concentrates on aspects of the broad areas of structural and spatial change in retailing. Since arriving at Stirling I have been involved in the generation of over c£2m of research funding. This research has been disseminated widely through a number of books, many reports and over 125 academic and professional articles.
Recent major research funding includes:
(with J Dawson, S Burt and G Hogg) The Centre for the Study of Retailing in Scotland (SHEFC)
(with S Cummins and M Petticrew) Reducing Inequalities in Health and Diet: the impact of a food retail development (Department of Health)
(with S Burt) Competitive Analysis of the UK Retail Sector, (Department of Trade and Industry)
(with CB Hillier Parker) A Review of the effectiveness of NPPG8, (Scottish Executive)
Rural Retailing (Countryside Agency)
(as CSRS) Accessing Healthy Food Across Scotland ( Food Standards Agency Scotland)
(with colleagues in Stirling and Dundee) Buywell: evaluation of a targeted marketing intervention to influence food purchasing behaviour by low income consumers (National Prevention Research Initiative).
(with colleagues in the School of Sport, Stirling) Developing the Malaysian sport industry: capacity building research (Sportswork Group)
Findlay A, Jackson M, McInroy N, Prentice P, Robertson E & Sparks L (2018) Putting Towns on the Policy Map: Understanding Scottish Places (USP). Scottish Affairs, 27 (3), pp. 294-318. https://doi.org/10.3366/scot.2018.0245.
Maglaras G, Sparks L & Bourlakis M (2017) Power Dynamics And Distribution Of Benefits Within Supply Networks: Insights From The UK Grocery Sector. IGD Supply Chain Summit 2017, 9.11.2017 - 9.11.2017, London.
Maglaras G, Sparks L & Bourlakis M (2017) Value appropriation mechanisms within power asymmetric network relationships: Insights from the UK grocery sector. 19th Conference of the European Association for Education and Research in Commercial Distribution (EAERCD), 4.7.2017 - 6.7.2017, Dublin, Ireland.
Szymoszowskyj A, Winand M, Kolyperas D & Sparks L (2016) Professional football clubs retail branding strategies. Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal, 6 (5), pp. 579-598. https://doi.org/10.1108/SBM-09-2016-0048.
Maglaras G, Bourlakis M & Sparks L (2015) Opportunism in power-imbalanced retailer-supplier relationships: The case of the food supply chain In: Proceedings of the 18th Conference of the European Association for Education and Research in Commercial Distribution, Rennes, France: EAERCD. 18th Conference of the European Association for Education and Research in Commercial Distribution, 1.7.2015 - 3.7.2015, Rennes, France.
Szymoszowskyj A, Winand M, Kolyperas D & Sparks L (2015) Retail Merchandise Strategies of Professional Football Clubs in Scotland. EURAM '15: 15th Annual Conference of the European Academy of Management, 16.6.2015 - 20.6.2015, Warsaw, Poland. Available from: http://2015.euramfullpaper.org/program/search.asp?qs=STIRLING%20UNIVERSITY
Robinson L, Jarvie G, Gratton C, Sparks L, Morrow S & Minikin B (2011) Developing the capacity of the Malaysian Sport Industry: A programme of capacity building research. Sportswork Group SDN.BHD. University of Stirling.