Retail Innovation Lab
Through our partnerships with select retailers and brands, the TJLC's Retail Innovation Lab aims to expand the boundaries of retailing with innovation and research. This is driven by the significant changes happening in the industry from customer engagement, operations, and integration of technology through all facets of the industry.
This lab is driven currently through very targeted, company specific consulting engagements that are designed to look deeply into real world challenges and opportunities in front of these client companies. From a student perspective, allow students to work closely with the companies and faculty on developing a very valuable set of skills including data analysis, design thinking, strategy development and presentation and communication skills. They also expose students to challenges in a very experiential fashion that builds on and enhances their academic learning.
A second element - still in discussion and development - is the creation of a real-world store lab in which associated faculty, students and clients can work together to develop and test in-store customer engagement strategies with real products and real customers in a live market environment. With this store lab changing monthly with an entirely new environment, testing objectives and associated findings, the resulting insights provided to Lab partners would be significant.
A core group of students and faculty drawn from the retailing and consumer sciences program and other appropriate disciplines help to develop the initial foundational knowledge for the project. This includes utilizing a variety of design-thinking tools including visualization, journey mapping, value chain analysis, concept development, assumption testing, and customer co-creation. As a project advances, its work may expand or pivot that may lead to its scope evolving and its team characteristics shifting.
The end objective is always to provide actionable strategies and solutions for clients while enhancing the learning of our students.
Looking for More Information?
If you are a UA student looking to get involved or a retail company looking to hire on the Retail Innovation Lab, please contact the Terry J. Lundgren Interim Director, Sheila Kressler-Crowley via email.