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Master Class & Doctoral colloquium - 'Real Life in Virtual Worlds: Opportunities and Challenges'

Friday, 12 December, 2014 - 14:00
Campus: Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering campus
Faculty: Social Sciences and Solvay Business School
Gebouw K
Auditorium P. Janssens
Master Class / Colloquium

The aim of this doctoral colloquium is to bring together scholars from various disciplines and universities, interested in human and business behavior in virtual worlds (such as Second Life, World of Warcraft, Habbo Hotel, etc…), more particularly the opportunities and challenges these worlds entail for business, social life, moral conduct, identity formation, etc… We hope to connect diverse disciplines, such as marketing and consumer behavior, psychology, communication studies, philosophy and moral sciences, and more… The colloquium provides pre- as well as post-doctoral students an opportunity to present their works in progress, but also their completed projects in the presence of renowned international experts, who will provide constructive criticism on their work. 

Keynote by Prof. dr. Michael Solomon - 'The Brand that Isn't There: Identity Management on Virtual Marketing Platforms' - 14:00-15:00

Fashion and identity are inextricably linked. Consumers throughout the ages have strategically deployed apparel and other self-expressive products to express real and aspirational personas and to pursue hedonic exploration and fantasy. Often these transformations are entrusted to aesthetic professionals such as clothing designers, cosmeticians and photographers. Today, new technological platforms enable even the amateur to create a myriad of identities as he or she navigates the evolving virtual environment some call The Metaverse.  In the process, entirely new brand platforms open as real products slowly but surely infiltrate these digital identities.  Consumers spend billions of dollars every year to buy virtual products that exist only on their computers – brands that aren’t there. And this is by no means a one-way journey; in some cases cyberspatial experiences also impact on real world identity. The presentation will explore theoretical and practical ramifications of digital identity management as consumers in the form of avatar representations make the passage from the physical world to the virtual -- and back again.

More information can be found in the document attached.

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