Dr Hela Hassen

Teaching Fellow in Marketing

Contact detailsHela Hassen

  • Name: Dr Hela Hassen
  • Office: Room 0.48, Teaching Centre, Brookfield
  • Office Hours: By appointment

Personal details

I studied English at the University of Reims in France and completed my undergraduate degree with a year abroad, spent at Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art and Technology in Dublin as an Erasmus student. I moved to Leicester to gain my MSc degree in Marketing in September 2013 before pursuing my PhD in the School of Management. Prior to taking up my current post as a teaching fellow in Marketing, I worked as a graduate teaching assistant and PhD researcher in the School of Business for four years. During this period, I also taught French at ‘Language at Leicester’.


  • MN7020 Dissertation supervision
  • MN7010 Principles of Marketing (MSc Marketing)
  • MN7011 Consumer, Branding and Communications (MSc Marketing)
  • MN3101/MN3103 Dissertation supervision (BA Marketing)

Administrative Responsibilities

  • Management of Distance Learning MSc Module: Consumer Behaviour (Module Leader)


My research explores how social relationships and exchanges in the digital sphere can be framed as gift practice. The purpose of my research is to explore the digital relationships and social exchanges on Instagram in order to acknowledge the reasons why media users both participate and contribute to the digital gift-giving community (comment, share, produce, create). These exchanges can create bonds, maintain social ties, display identities and reflect social status. Nevertheless, such exchanges, can also create feelings of social obligation and indebtedness. My research demonstrates that the concepts gift-giving and reciprocity from the anthropological view of Marcel Mauss are still essential in contemporary social sciences.

Major areas of interest and technique include:

  • Qualitative research (Textual analysis, netnography, interviews, focus groups)
  • Food Culture and Practices
  • Food Identities
  • Gift exchange / Social relationships and bonds
  • Social Networking Sites (SNS) and Social Capital
  • Digital Communities


I am interested in supervising students in any of the above areas of interests.


Currently working on several publications based on my PhD research.


  • ‘Exploring digital communities and social exchanges on the Instagram platform’, conference paper presented at the Instagram Conference, Middlesex University, London (June, 2018)
  • ‘Social exchanges in digital media’, poster presented at the Consumer Culture Theory Conference, Anaheim, California, USA (July 2017)
  • ‘Gift giving practice in the digital food media’, poster presented at the Consumer Culture Theory Conference, Lille, Hauts-de-France, France (July 2016)
  • ‘Food in the Digital Media’ paper delivered at the School of Business PhD Conference, University of Leicester (December 2016)

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Contact Details

School of Business
University of Leicester
University Road



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