Conclusion

Although this discussion has focused upon the commercial marketplace, the techniques of consumer research are used extensively in broader nonprofit and societal orientations as well. Questions of consumer welfare, product safety, and truth-in-packaging legislation have been central among these broader concerns. Equally central have been issues relating to quality of life and the reciprocal nature of consumer behavior: (1) the responsibility of society toward the individual consumer, and (2) the responsibility of the individual consumer toward society. Society's responsibility encompasses areas such as health care delivery systems, education, and cultural and recreational facilities. The individual consumer's responsibility encompasses respect for the environment, for communities, and for natural resources.

Edward L. Palmer

Davidson College, Davidson, North Carolina

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