Professor Caravella Wins Prestigious Marketing Award for Retail Research

Cashier returning credit card at the cash register to woman with wallet wearing protective face mask and gloves to prevent viruses

Marketing professor Mary Caravella and three colleagues have been named the recipients of the American Marketing Association’s 2020 Louis W. Stern Award for research excellence.

Their article, “Adding Bricks to Clicks: Predicting the Patterns of Cross-Channel Elasticities Over Time,” was published in the Journal of Marketing and has been cited some 400 times by other researchers.

It expanded research on multi-channel retailing, by examining how adding a new brick-and-mortar store impacted sales for a firm with existing direct mail and online retail presence. Caravella collaborated with Professors Jill Avery and John Deighton of Harvard University and Thomas Steenburgh of the University of Virginia.

Marketing professor Mary Caravella (Nathan Oldham / UConn School of Business)
Marketing professor Mary Caravella (Nathan Oldham / UConn School of Business)

The Stern Award is given annually to one outstanding article published in a top journal which made a significant contribution to marketing literature. The article encompassed quality data, original theory, and made a significant impact on research knowledge, the review committee concluded.

“In this time, where channels to market are again facing dramatic change and new strategies being put to the test, it is particularly rewarding to have this work recognized,” Caravella said. “I am proud to have been a part of this research, along with a terrific team of co-authors. I hope both managers and researchers find its theoretical framework and methodologies useful in these challenging times.”

Debanjan Mitra, acting department head in marketing, said the Stern Award is the AMA’s highest recognition of a long-term contribution to the marketing literature and that Caravella’s work brings honor both to UConn and to the School of Business.

“This is a rare achievement that puts Mary and her co-authors in the company of stalwarts in this domain,” Mitra said. “Mary’s contribution is richly deserving, making impact across multiple disciplines beyond marketing, including management, operations, information systems, and supply chain, to name a few, and gathering almost 400 citations in the process. The paper specifically focuses on synergy and cannibalization across physical and virtual channels and is considered seminal in understanding what later came to be known as omnichannel marketing.”