Akon Ekpo

Title/s:  Assistant Professor

Office #:  Schreiber 330

Phone: 312.915.6384

Email: aekpo@luc.edu


Dr. Akon Ekpo is an Assistant Professor of Marketing in the Quinlan School of Business. Her research seeks to disentangle how digital culture and racialized consumption experiences shape power, resistance, and racialized market structures, to ultimately shape diversity and inclusion in the marketplace. Akon’s research has appeared in Marketing Letters, Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, Journal of Business Research, and Marketing Theory; and has been presented at numerous conferences.

Prior to pursuing her Ph.D., Akon worked in the information technology field as an applications developer, quality assurance analyst, and software design engineer at various corporations including Allstate Insurance, Bank One (now Chase Bank), and UOP LLC.


  • Ph.D., Marketing, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • B.S., Information Systems (Computer Science), DePaul University

Research Interests

Technology usage of marginalized consumers, racialized marketplace experiences, marketplace diversity & inclusion, consumer well-being & transformative consumer research.

Professional & Community Affiliations

  • Association for Consumer Research
  • Chicago Consumer Culture Community
  • Consumer Culture Theory Consortium
  • Digital Analytics Association
  • KPMG/The PhD Project
  • Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Incorporated

Courses Taught

  • Digital Marketing Strategy
  • Digital Content Creation
  • Internet & Social Media Marketing
  • Advanced Internet Marketing
  • Introduction to Management Information Systems (MIS)
  • Operations Management
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Principles of Marketing
  • Marketing Management


  • Committee on Institutional Equity & Diversity Mini-Grant, Rutgers University Camden (campus-wide), 2016-2019
  • Summer Research Grant, Rutgers School of Business Camden (college-wide), 2017
  • Research Council Grant, Rutgers University (university-wide), 2016
  • Digital Teaching Fellows, Rutgers University Camden (campus-wide), 2016
  • Haworth College of Business Professional Development Award, Western Michigan University (college-wide), 2012-2014
  • Haenicke Institute for International Education Faculty Development Fund, Western Michigan University (university-wide), 2013
  • Haworth College of Business Mini-Grant, Western Michigan University (college-wide), 2013
  • American Marketing Association (AMA) Foundation Valuing Diversity Scholarship, 2011
  • National Association of Black MBA H. Naylor Fitzhugh Doctoral Fellowship, 2010

Selected Publications

Ekpo, Akon E., Benét DeBerry-Spence, Geraldine Rosa Henderson, and Joseph Cherian (2018), “Narratives of Technology Consumption in the Face of Marketplace Discrimination,” Marketing Letters, 29(4), 451-463. 

DeBerry-Spence, Benét, Akon E. Ekpo, and Dan Hogan (2018), “Mobile Phone Visual Ethnography: Bridging Transformative Photography and Mobile Phone Ethnography,” Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 38(1), 81-95. 

Ozanne, Julie L., Brennan Davis, Jeff B. Murray, Sonya Grier, Ahmed Benmecheddal, Hilary Downey, Akon E. Ekpo, Marion Garnier, Joel Hietanen, Marine Le Gall-Ely, Anastasia Seregina, Kevin D. Thomas, and Ekant Veer (2017), “Assessing the Societal Impact of Research: The Relational Engagement Approach,” Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 36(1), 1-14.
**LEAD ARTICLE; Finalist for the Thomas C. Kinnear/Journal of Marketing & Public Policy Award

Bennett, Aronté Marie, Stacey Menzel Baker, Samantha Cross, J.P. James, Gregory Bartholomew, Akon E. Ekpo, Geraldine Rosa Henderson, Martina Hutton, Aporov Khare, Abhijit Roy, Tony Stovall, and Charles Ray Taylor (2016), “Omission and Commission as Marketplace Trauma,” Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 35(2), 280-291.

Lindridge, Andrew, Geraldine R. Henderson, and Akon E. Ekpo (2015), “(Virtual) Ethnicity, the Internet, and Well-Being,” Marketing Theory, 15(2), 279-285.

Ekpo, Akon E., Breagin Riley, Kevin Thomas, Geraldine Rosa Henderson, Zachary Haller, and Isaac Muñoz (2015), “As Worlds Collide: A Phenomenological Inquiry into the Role of Relationship Management in Customer-to-Customer Interactions,” Journal of Business Research, 68(1), 119-126.

Henderson, Geraldine Rosa, Akon E. Ekpo, and Zachary Yvaire (2014), “Good from ‘Evil’: The Polarizing Effect of Corporate Social Responsibility for Controversial Companies,” in Ronald Hill and Ryan Langan (eds.), Handbook of Research on Marketing and Corporate Social Responsibility, Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing, pp. 307-330.

DeBerry-Spence, Benét, Akon E. Ekpo, Mopelola Adelakun, and Hande Gunay (2013), “Towards Marketplace Diversity: A Multi-measure, Multi-dimensional Study of the Journal of Public Policy and Marketing,” Journal Public Policy & Marketing, 32(Special Issue), 6-15.