James Leonhardt Headshot

James M. Leonhardt

Associate Professor of Marketing, Phil and Jennifer Satre Professor of Marketing


James M. Leonhardt is the Phil and Jennifer Satre Professor of Marketing and an Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Nevada, Reno College of Business. He is affiliated with the Ozmen Institute for Global Studies and was a Visiting Scholar at the SGH Warsaw School of Economics and Adolfo Ibáñez University.

Dr. Leonhardt completed his formal education at the University of California, Berkeley (B.A.) and the Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine (Ph.D.). He studied at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and holds Teaching Marketing Analytics and Digital Marketing Education certificates from the Academy of Marketing Science.

Dr. Leonhardt serves on the Editorial Board of several academic journals and regularly engages in international research collaborations and initiatives. He is on the Scientific Council for Przeglad Organizacji and consults with international organizations to foster innovation and entrepreneurship in the United States and abroad.


At the University, Dr. Leonhardt teaches five courses per year (2/3 load), with recent courses including Integrated Marketing Communications (MKT 492/692) and an Advanced Seminar on Digital Marketing (MKT 492/692). He’s also taught Principles of Marketing, Consumer Behavior, Internet and Social Media Marketing, and a Doctoral Seminar. Dr. Leonhardt has authored several case studies and, through a fellowship with the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative, teaching materials on Marketing Ethics.

Dr. Leonhardt actively supervises undergraduate and graduate independent study projects and was a volunteer instructor for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of California, Davis, and UNR. In recognition of his teaching and mentorship, Dr. Leonhardt was honored with the Willem Houwink Memorial Award for Teaching Excellence (2020) and the College of Business Excellence in Teaching Award (2019). He was also nominated by the College of Business for UNR’s Outstanding Undergraduate Research Faculty Mentor Award.


Dr. Leonhardt’s research interests and expertise are in consumer behavior, specifically cross-cultural consumer information processing using an interdisciplinary, multi-method approach to inform traditional and digital marketing communications strategies, as well as transformative marketing initiatives in areas such as health, sustainability, and public policy. Across contexts and cultures, Dr. Leonhardt and colleagues have found that how information is presented and subsequently processed has consistent and predictable effects on how we feel, think, and behave.

For example, in the emerging field of marketing psycholinguistics, Dr. Leonhardt and colleagues find that specific linguistic features, such as second-person pronouns, negations, or expressions of certainty, in social media affect consumer engagement with notable cross-cultural variations. Additionally, his work shows how consumers process information relating to brand naming, product and social media imagery, online consumer reviews, front-of-package labeling, environmental messaging, and health information, such as medical side-effect probabilities, affect important consumer outcomes, such as word-of-mouth, willingness-to-pay, brand trust and attitude, recycling rates, and prosocial judgments and decision making.

For his scholarly contributions, Dr. Leonhardt received the Phil & Jennifer Satre Endowed Professorship in Marketing (2023), and he is the recipient of the Dean’s Research Professor Award (2021-2023), a three-year award for sustained excellence in research. His research has been supported through several grants and fellowships, most recently the Harold and Muriel Berkman Charitable Foundation and the Ozmen Institute for Global Studies. Dr. Leonhardt’s research has been published in leading academic journals, such as the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, the Journal of Consumer Psychology, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, and has been featured in popular outlets, such as The Wall Street Journal, US News, and Medscape.

Recent Publications

  • Liu, H., Perera, S., Wang, J., & Leonhardt, J. M. (2023). Physician engagement in online medical teams: A multilevel investigation. Journal of Business Research, 157, 113588.
  • Pezzuti, T. & Leonhardt, J. M. (2022). What’s not to like? Negations in brand messages increase consumer engagement. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 51, 675-694.
  • LaBarge, M., Walker, K., Azzari, C., Bourassa, M., Catlin, J., Finkelstein, S., Gloukhovtsev, A., Leonhardt, J., Martin, K., Rejowicz-Quaid, M., & Reshadi, M. (2022). Digital exchange compromises: Teetering priorities of consumers, organizations at the Iron Triangle. Journal of Consumer Affairs, 56(3), 1220-1243.
  • Leonhardt, J. M. & Pezzuti, T. (2022). Vaccination acceptance across cultures: The roles of collectivism, empathy, and homophily. Journal of International Marketing, 30(2), 13-27.
  • Leonhardt, J. M., Ridinger, G., Rong, Y., & Talaei-Khoe, A. (2021). Invincibility threatens vaccination intentions during a pandemic. PLoS ONE, 16(10), e0258432.
  • Leonhardt, J. M. & Pechmann, C. (2021). Is this product easy to control? Liabilities of using difficult-to-pronounce product names. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 165, 90-102.
  • Catlin, J. R., Leonhardt, J. M., Wang, Y., Manuel, R. J., (2021). Landfill or recycle? Pro-environmental receptacle labeling increases recycling contamination. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 31(4), 765-772.
  • Pezzuti, T., Leonhardt, J. M., & Warren, C. (2021). Certainty in language increases engagement on social media. Journal of Interactive Marketing, 53, 32-46.


  • Ph.D., University of California, Irvine
  • B.A., University of California, Berkeley