Dr Alastair Tombs
Alastair Tombs
Senior Lecturer in Marketing
  • PhD, Marketing Management (UQ)
  • PGC Higher Ed, Higher Education (UQ)
  • BCom (Hons 1), Marketing Management (University of Otago, New Zealand)
+61 7 334 68091
Room 434, Colin Clark Building, St. Lucia Campus

    Alastair's research follows two interlinked main streams: 1) customer-to-customer and customer-to-service provider interactions, and 2) service environments and their impact on consumer emotions and customer behaviour.

    Prior to gaining a PhD in Marketing Management in 2005 he has had extensive experience in both the commercial and public sectors. This included over 20 years of running his own businesses in areas such as retail, property management and architectural/engineering design.

    To date Alastair's work has been published in: academic journals (Journal of Business Research, Psychology and Marketing, European Journal of Marketing, Marketing Theory, Managing Services Quality, Journal of Management and Organisation, Australasian Marketing Journal); as book chapters (Research on emotions in organizations, Research companion to emotions in organizations, Streaming Media in Higher Education, Serving Customers: Global reflections on Services Marketing) and at numerous international conferences. He has received a "best article" award in the Australasian Marketing Journal as well as "best paper" awards at Australasian, American and European marketing conferences.

    Research interests

    Customer integration into the service environment
    This research concentrates on the effects that other customers have on customers. It investigates emotional contagion between customers and deindividuation effects of staff and customers.
    Emotional expression
    This research focuses on how emotions are expressed and recognised by individuals though non verbal means. I am currently looking at face to face interactions in the service environment, cross-cultural emotional recognition, and the use of clothing as emotional expression.
    The Social-servicescape
    This research stems from my PhD topis and investigates the effect that the human aspects of the service environment have on customer behaviour and attitudes.


    View full publications list


    • Association for Consumer Research
    • Australia and New Zealand Academy of Marketing
    • Australian Marketing Institute
    • Emotions and Organisational Life (EMONET)


    Best Paper Award 2010 – Australian Marketing Journal: Tombs, Alastair G. and Janet R. McColl-Kennedy (2010) Social and spatial influence of other customers in the social-servicescape, Australasian Marketing Journal, 18 (3), 120-131.
    Best paper based on a PhD Thesis award 2006 - Keeffe, D., Bennett, R., & Tombs A.G. (2006) Caveat Venditor: How emotions and cognition influence consumers’ negative behavioural responses to service recovery. 5th International Conference on Emotions and Organizational Life. Atlanta. August 10-12.
    Best paper award 2003 – Tombs, A.G. & J.R. McColl-Kennedy. (2003). The Social-servicescape: A conceptual model. Competitive paper in 32nd European Marketing Academy Conference proceedings. Glasgow Scotland. May 20-23
    Monash PhD Award 2002 - Tombs A.G. (2002) “The Social Servicescape: The impact of customers on the service environment” Australian and New Zealand Marketing Academy Doctoral Colloquium. Auckland, New Zealand. December 1.