Denmark's Nation-brand Image in Australia: A Master Thesis on the Relation Between Danish Identity and Danish Nation-brand Image Seen From an Australian Perspective

Julie Katrine Kold

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

It is clear, that the world has become one market where long distances no longer seem to be an issue. The rapid advance of globalisation forces nations to compete for their share of the world's consumers, tourists, students and investors among others. Denmark is one of the countries that, through nation-branding programmes, compete with other nations in order to obtain sustainable competitive advantages and to create a positive nation-brand image. However, Denmark is a small nation that is often mixed up with the other Scandinavian countries. Therefore, it becomes uncertain how our country is perceived across the world, and in this case Australia. The objective of this thesis is based on an analysis of selected elements of Danish identity and a questionnaire survey that allows me to examine, how the Danish nation-brand image is perceived in Australia. The main research question is: Which elements constitute the Danish identity and are these consistent with Denmark's nation-brand image in Australia?The theoretical framework of the thesis is generally based on theories within the field of nation branding, in order to understand the relation between identity and image in a nation-branding context. Furthermore, theoreticians on national identity (Baron & Herslund 2016; Jenkins 2012) are used along with Simon Anholt's theory of Competitive Identity to provide a theoretical foundation for the analysis of selected elements within Danish identity. Finally, Keith Dinnie's Conceptual Model of nation-brand Identity and Image will be used to analyse, how Australia perceive Denmark's nation brand image.The thesis is based on two separate analyses. The first is about selected elements in Danish identity that, in addition, provides the basis of the questionnaire survey, which is addressed to the Australian population. The second analysis uses the findings from the survey to find out how the Danish nation-brand image is perceived in Australia. Based on the theoretical framework and the survey, the hypothesis states that Danish identity consists of different levels, but the most essential part of Danish identity is what the Australian population know least about. The hypothesis is con-firmed through the empirical findings, which is constituted by 107 responses. As the method of investigation is a questionnaire survey that includes open and closed questions, the methodological foundation is a composition of qualitative and quantitative reflections. Furthermore, the theory of science is based on a social constructivist and a hermeneutical approach.Based on the theoretical foundation, Danish identity is constituted by three levels that present elements applied in nation branding. The first level is the peripheral narrative of Denmark as an idyllic monarchy. The second level is the narrative of Danish national identity, which formulates the democratic welfare state, and the third level is the narrative of an attempt to engraft design and quality into Danish national identity. The survey, which is constructed by these levels, reveals that the Australian population generally have very little knowledge of Denmark. However, a few elements, such as Princess Mary, H.C. Andersen and The Little Mermaid, are all well-known objects in the minds of the Australians. These are all elements from the peripheral narrative of Danish identity, which undoubtedly derive from – but do not constitute – the essential Danish national identity. Therefore, it can be concluded, that Danish identity and Denmark's nation-brand image in Australia are somehow inconsistent.Lastly, future implications of the analyses and findings are discussed in a perspective that suggests how the inconsistencies between Danish identity and Danish nation-brand image, can be turned into consistencies.

EducationsMA in International Business Communication (Intercultural Marketing), (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageDanish
Publication date2016
Number of pages134
SupervisorsIrène Baron