Jonathan Reynolds

Associate Professor in Retail Marketing and Deputy Dean

Saïd Business School
University of Oxford
Park End Street


Jonathan Reynolds is one of the leading academic experts in the study of the retail sector internationally.


He is Academic Director of the Oxford Institute of Retail Management, Associate Professor in Retail Marketing and Deputy Dean at Saïd Business School. He is also Deputy Director of the ESRC’s Consumer Data Research Centre.

Jonathan’s teaching and research focus primarily on the retail sector. He is particularly recognised for his scholarship and expertise in the areas of electronic commerce and omni-channel retailing, innovation and entrepreneurship in retailing, retail productivity and skills, and the role of place in marketing and retailing.

His views are sought after by businesses, policy makers and the media. He is heavily committed to knowledge exchanger, actively seeking to ensure that his research can be widely disseminated amongst policy-makers and practitioners. While his academic expertise lies in marketing and geography, Jonathan’s research activities have also extended into science and technology studies and strategic management.

He is a founding member of the Oxford Institute of Retail Management, and has been its Academic Director since 1999. The Institute undertakes a range of both commissioned and public domain research with direct relevance to practitioners, but which is nevertheless grounded within rigorous academic scholarship.

Jonathan read geography as an undergraduate at the University of Oxford, and then took an MA in Environmental Planning at the University of Nottingham, and a PhD at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He returned to Oxford in 1985 to work on research for the British retailer Tesco on the application of new forms of technology and e-commerce, following a post at the University of Edinburgh as founding Research Fellow for the Coca-Cola Retail Research Foundation. He has also been Visiting Professor at the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College.

He is a Governing Body Fellow at Green Templeton College, Oxford. 


  • Retailing and technology (electronic-commerce and omni-channel retailing)
  • Retail innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Retail development and planning
  • Retail productivity and skills


Jonathan’s research focuses primarily on the retail sector.

He is recognised internationally for his expertise in the areas of electronic commerce and omni-channel retailing, innovation & entrepreneurship in retailing, retail productivity and skills, and the role of place in marketing and retail management - in particular, the consequences for retail development and planning.

He is presently Deputy Director of the ESRC-funded Consumer Data Research Centre, a £7.9m initiative run jointly by the Universities of Oxford, Liverpool, Leeds and UCL to create a service that will open up the data resources routinely collected by the retail business sector to academic research, training and capacity building. He has also been Associate Director of the ESRC-funded Retail Industry Business Engagement Cluster (RIBEN), a £1.4m collaboration between Oxford, Southampton, Leeds and Surrey Universities.


  • Tong Wu,
  • Jonathan Reynolds,
  • Bodo B Schlegelmilch,
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Retailing After the Industrial Revolution(opens in new window)

  • Chapter
  • The Oxford Handbook of Industry Dynamics
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  • Jonathan Reynolds
  • Mingjie Ji,
  • Christine Zeng,
  • Brian King,
  • Jonathan Reynolds

How CEOs Twitter with Customers: Key Insights and Future Research Directions: An Abstract(opens in new window)

  • Chapter
  • Celebrating the Past and Future of Marketing and Discovery with Social Impact
  • Tong Wu,
  • Jonathan Reynolds,
  • Jintao Wu,
  • Bodo B Schlegelmilch
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Jonathan engages widely with industry in his role.

The nature of retailing means that it is critical to Jonathan’s research that he remains in close contact with current retail practice and works to anticipate future developments within the industry. He is actively engaged with both retail practitioners and with policymakers interested in retail matters both in the UK and internationally.

Much of his research is conducted in association with retailers and industry bodies or draws upon their data and experience. Recent research partners include: the British Retail Consortium, Eurocommerce and the Association of Convenience Stores.

Jonathan’s advice is also sought by government and industry bodies.

He has recently been involved in the following projects:

  • Chairing the British Retail Consortium’s ‘Retail2020’ conference, London, 2017
  • Providing consultancy advice on British retail growth strategy for HM Treasury and the Department of Business
  • Chairing the European Commission’s Expert Group on Retail Innovation
  • Providing advice on retail sector productivity issues to the Department of Business
  • Advising the European wholesale and retail trade organisation Eurocommerce
  • Advising the Association of Convenience Stores on planning legislation and scenarios for the future of convenience retailing
  • A member of the UK-India Business Council JETCO steering group
  • Participating in the Mary Portas’ review for the Government of the Future of the High Street
  • A member of the Advisory Board for Tsinghua University’s Retail Research Centre

He is also a frequent speaker at retail industry gatherings, including recently:

  • ‘Navigating the New Retail Landscape’, World Retail Congress, Dubai, 2016, 2017.
  • Future High Street Summit 2016, Nottingham.
  • With Nick Everitt, ‘The Retail Business Model of the Future’, keynote paper at the World Retail Congress, Rome, September 2015.
  • ‘Innovation and the Future of Shopping Centres’, paper presented at Italian Council of Shopping Centres, Milan, June 2015. 
  • Independent Retailing Europe Conference, (2014), London, Keynote paper ‘Innovation & Change in Small Format Proximity Retailing’. 
  • With Richard Cuthbertson, (2014), Retail and wholesale: key sectors for the European economy, Eurocommerce, Brussels. 
  • Internet Retailing, (2014), NEC, Birmingham. ‘What does a successful international multichannel retailing strategy look like?’
  • Distanshandelsdagen, Sweden, (2014), ‘Innovation & Retail Business Development.’
  • European Commission, DG Markt, (2014) High Level Group on Retail Competitiveness, Brussels, ‘Innovation in Retailing’.

Jonathan is a skilled and experienced media communicator, and regularly contributes his insights on retail and consumer matters to the media including the BBC, The Times, The Independent, The Guardian, The Economist, The Financial Times, Business Week and The Wall Street Journal.

He is a member of the editorial boards of the International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research and the International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management. He speaks frequently at academic conferences on retailing internationally.

Selected academic conference contributions include:

  • Improvisational innovation: learning from the collaborative practices of emerging market entrepreneurs & retail SMEs (with Malobi Mukherjee), EAERCD Conference, Dublin Institute of Technology, July 2017.
  • ‘Open seminar on big data and service innovation’, University of Tampere, 2017.
  • ‘Retail Destination’ workshop, Centre for Retail Research at Lund University, 2016.
  • ‘The Contemporary Dynamics of GB Urban Retailing: Examining the Evidence, EAERCD conference, Universite de Rennes, June 2015.
  • ‘Big Data in UK Retailing: Issues and Applications’, International Big Data Workshop, Kansei University, Osaka, Japan, March 2015.‘Diversity in Urban Retailing: the Changing Geography of UK Retail Places’, paper presented at EIRASS conference Bucharest July 2014
  • ESRC Retail Sector Initiative, Engaged Business Research for Impact, Nottingham, (2014). ‘Engaged Business Research: the example of retail research at Oxford’. 
  • Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, IN3 workshop on E-Retailing, Barcelona, (2012), E-Retailing across Europe: Contrasts and Challenges
  • Engage: Social Media Michaelmas, University of Oxford Learning Technologies Group, Oxford, (2012), Socialising intellectual capital: risks and rewards
  • European Institute for Retailing & Service Science conference, Vienna, (2012), ‘Understanding the effects of e-commerce on retail productivity and skills’
  • Finnish Retail Research Day, (2012), keynote, Turku School of Economics, ‘Retail innovation with special reference to multichannel retailing’
  • ESRC/AIM Researcher Development Initiative conference, (2011), Invited keynote, ‘Engaged Business Research: the example of retail research at Oxford’
  • I Encuentro del Sector de Consumo y Distribución Perspectivas a futuro de las marcas distribuidor y del marco regulatorio de la industria, (2010), Keynote: ‘Private labels in the UK: contemporary challenges & strategic trends’, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, February
  • University of Tampere, Finland, (2009), Invited keynote paper on ‘Retailing research in the UK’ at Finnish Retail Research Colloquium, October
  • Norwegian School of Management, Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Silicon Valley: Best Practices and Emerging Trends, (2008), ‘Innovation in Europe and in the US: Lessons for participants and policymakers’, Keynote paper, San Francisco, April


Jonathan is a supervisor for MBA and EMBA Entrepreneurship Projects and he also tutors groups for the Global Opportunities & Threats Oxford module.

He provides Marketing tutorials and lectures on the School’s BA in Economics and Management. He taught an elective in Retailing on the MBA programme for several years, working with a senior retail practitioner, and still contributes to Saïd Business School’s Executive Education portfolio. He supervises students undertaking the DPhil in Management Studies.

Central to his style of teaching is the bringing together of theory and practice, often by inviting practitioner guests. Jonathan is also a keen user of social media to support his teaching, particularly for undergraduates on the BA in Economics and Management, and he regularly updates a Flipboard online magazine for the students as well as maintaining a topical Twitter feed reflecting on retail issues.

Jonathan contributes to the Oxford Real Estate Investment Programme, part of Oxford Saïd's online Executive Education portfolio.

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You can also check out Jonathan's blog.

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