Diversity, Inclusion and the Cocktail Connection

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Bosco, Anna (2022) Diversity, Inclusion and the Cocktail Connection. Research Master thesis, Victoria University.


From its increase in books sales, to its presence in podcasts and websites, along with a lengthy history of references in popular literature, film and television, it is clear the cocktail has become a significant niche within contemporary consumer culture. Current market research estimates that the value of the global cocktail industry will reach US$1.4 billion by 2027. But the cocktail is not new. Archival evidence indicates the drink has been a societal phenomenon for hundreds of years. Despite the ongoing popularity of the cocktail, the current landscape of academic literature shows little if any focus on this area of tourism and hospitality. This study aims to offer some insight into a question yet to be posted in academia. What is cocktail culture, socially and historically? It also provides support for the idea that the cocktail experience employs diversity to foster social connection amongst its consumers. This research undertakes an inductive ethnographic exploration of historical archives, including first- and second-hand accounts of cocktail drinking environments and instructional literature to discover the value systems that have historically been associated with the cocktail experience. It highlights diversity, inclusion, and social connection as foundational principles of the cultural value system that surrounded the birth and expansion of the cocktail. This data is then compared to the results of the thematic analysis of a focus group consisting of various professionals in the cocktail industry in Melbourne, Australia. It examines how these values continue to influence Melbourne’s contemporary cocktail experience. These findings suggest the cocktail experience can and often does leave consumers feeling more connected.

Additional Information

Master of Research

Item type Thesis (Research Master thesis)
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/44739
Subjects Current > FOR (2020) Classification > 3506 Marketing
Current > FOR (2020) Classification > 3508 Tourism
Current > FOR (2020) Classification > 4702 Cultural studies
Current > Division/Research > Institute for Sustainable Industries and Liveable Cities
Keywords cocktail; mixed drinks; Melbourne; Australia; diversity; inclusion; history; culture; social; hospitality; tourism
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