Co-creation and Psychological Ownership in Crowdfunding: An Empirical Study on How Consumer Engagement in Co-creation Influence the Emergence of Psychological Ownership in the Context of Crowdfunding

Karina Pankovska

Student thesis: Master thesis


In line with the emerging service-dominant logic and relationship-focus brand era, the concept of cocreation has been getting an increasing relevance. In this context, crowdfunding, as a form of crowdsourcing and alternative financing has been seen as a facilitator of co-creation, attracting both consumers and entrepreneurs. One of the desired beneficial outcomes of co-creation is consumers’ enhanced sense of psychological ownership towards the possessions or brand activities they get involved in. In spite of the growing discussions around the three areas, co-creation and psychological ownership in the context of crowdfunding have not received enough academic attention, thus motivating the researcher to explore the links in the present study. This study employs a “grounded theory” approach, performing an in depth-qualitative analysis of cocreation practices performed by experienced and non-experienced crowdfunding users. The study consists of two stages of qualitative data collection and explores how psychological ownership emerges in the minds of crowdfunding users who engage in co-creation. This study findings propose that consumer involvement in co-creation can and do influence their sense of psychological ownership in various ways. Consumer need for transparent communication, timely information availability as well as their personal time and value investment into the crowdfunding projects have been found to be the strongest enhancers of psychological ownership derived from co-creation activities. Further on, this study discusses theoretical contributions of the research, followed by practical implementations for managers interested in launching or managing crowdfunding initiatives. Finally, methodological limitations and suggestions for future research in the field are addressed.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2019
Number of pages199
SupervisorsStefan Markovic