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Promotion: Matthias Pannhorst

Matthias Pannhorst: Latent Markov models for old-age consumer marketing. A life-course-inspired analysis of trajectories through the senior years.

Using latent Markov models the thesis analyzes several current issues in old-age consumer research. Above all, it is a methodological contribution in the area of old-age marketing proposing latent Markov models as an empirical operationalization of the life course paradigm. The life course paradigm posits that previous experiences in an individual’s life course are formative for present preferences and attitudes. The thesis shows that as a flexible methodological framework latent Markov models can address a number of issues in old-age marketing. At the same time, it responds to calls for an increased application of longitudinal methods to questions of the social sciences in general and of age-related consumer research in particular.