The Second-­‐hand Retail Industry: Intra-­‐Comparison of combining Social and Commercial enterprise

Youfei Jiang

Student thesis: Master thesis


The aim of this thesis is to investigate the different operational practice between commercial and social second-hand retailers. In view of the growing interest in alternative consumption channels, the concept of second-hand shopping is developing rapidly at recent years. Compare to the normal retailing industry, in the second-hand clothing industry, the operational models are diverse, we can see that lots of so-called thrift shops are operated by those non-profit organizations, for instance, the Red Cross, Goodwill (from Unite State),Salvation Army (from Australian), and so on. Then how do customers and founders perceive the value created by commercial and social ventures that serve the same markets, and translate it into the daily operational practice? This thesis research the topic by exploring the second hand retail industry historically, globally and then narrow down into the Denmark context. After that, by conducting the empirical data (collect from surveys, interviews and participate observation), it will identify the concept of thrift consumption (from customers’ perspective) and the professionalism process of commercial and charity second-hand shops’ operation (from the founders and managers perspective) based on Foucault’s Govern-mentality Theory, presenting customers and founders’ perception towards the difference between commercial and social second-hand stores, and how did the founders translate it into the operational practice, resulting in a discussion of the main principals from a theoretical perspective to end in a conclusion and suggestion of further studies.

EducationsMSocSc in Organisational Innovation and Entrepreneurship , (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2015
Number of pages74