Replication and George the Galapagos tortoise

Don E. Schultz*, Gayle Kerr, Philip Kitchen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


This paper conceptualises replication research as being one of the most needed areas of ongoing academic activity. Using George the Galapagos tortoise as a metaphor for the lack of replication research, it is argued that only by replicating research studies over time can solid theory be developed. For the most part, advertising and marketing communication research consists of non-replicated, one-shot, point-in-time experiments which, once accepted and published by a journal, becomes the litany of the academic community and is then deified by the citation process. The paper begins by reviewing the background of replication research in the marketing communication domain and applies it to current thinking and publication trends. Reasons for the lack of replication research are presented and some conclusions are drawn for those seeking to confirm or challenge existing research. An agenda is provided for the development and publication of replication research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)313-328
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Marketing Communications
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Replication research
  • advertising and marketing communication
  • agenda
  • publication trends
  • theoretical development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Marketing


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