Department of Management, Society and Communication

Associate professor

Room: DH.Ø.2.15
E-mail: vs.msc@cbs.dk

In my current research, I addresses the ways in which different “cocktails” of words, sentences, numbers, images, colours, shapes, tastes, and other potential carriers of communicative content affect recipients’ expectations, concept (re)formations, and decision-making when accessed in settings characterized by multifaceted preferences and substantial time pressure, e.g. shopping in supermarkets or e-stores.

In the cross-institutional project “Spin or Fair Speak: When Foods talk” and three smaller follow-up projects coordinated by myself (2007-2015), the strategic goal was to develop new knowledge and tools for assessing the fairness and potential misleadingness of food packaging design solutions on empirical grounds. Apart from the academic outcome in the shape of about 20 journal articles and a few collective volumes, the deliverables included a comprehensive set of guidelines for Danish food manufacturers and retailers on ways of combining effective and creative marketing communication with communicative fairness beyond legal demands.

At present, a major project proposal is in preparation which aims at developing new user-driven strategies for better integrating taste and eating experiences in the verbal and visual (multimodal) framing of commercial food products through packaging design and in e-store presentations, with a special focus on fish and seafood. The planned contributors includes the Sensory Group at DTU Food, the Danish Language Council, and selected food companies and retailers.

In my earlier research, I have furthermore addressed issues related to the linguistic and cultural relativity of  human cognition and world views, both in general and relative to the convergence of European legal cultures, terminology and knowledge management, and general cognitive and semantic theory.

Primary research areas
  • Multimodal Communication
  • Naming & Framing
  • Product Labelling Fairness
  • The Law-Language Interface
  • Conceptual Analysis and Knowledge Management
  • Cognitive Language Theory, Psycholinguistics
Administrative tasks

Member of MSC Department Forum (2018-2019) and of a number of Study Boards, Working Groups, and Department Thinktanks throughout my affiliation to CBS.

Coordinator of four externally funded research projects under the Danish Council for Strategic Research, Independent Research Fund Denmark, and Danish Games during (2007-2015); total grant sum at about 9 million DKK.

Coordinator of the drafting of several research proposals, including one in progress, and contributor to yet others, e.g. a CIEL project on a joint DTU/KU/CBS Program on Food Innovation.

I have furthermore been responsible for smaller, locally funded projects (pilot project on the perception of Danish organic products across cultures, SugarTexts, Russian Legal and Police Language).

Co-editor of LSP Journal - Language for special purposesprofessional communicationknowledge management, and cognition (2009-2014), editor/co-editor of several books, peer reviewer for international journals in the fields of consumer communication, food research, and cognitive semiotics.

Link to this homepage

Most lately, my teaching has been concentrated on the courses Multimodal Communication (course coordinator) and Communication Planning  in the BA-IBC Program at CBS, combined with elective courses and Master Thesis supervision. My previous teaching and course development/coordination responsibilities in Master and BA programs at CBS also include such fields as European legal cultures,  specialized translation and knowledge management (Russian and general), philosophy of science, general (cognitive) language theory, and development/running of elective courses on fair food labelling, strategic naming & framing, and public relations.


I have been supervisor/co-supervisor or main assessor of 7 PhD projects and supervised more than 40 Master Theses (MA_IBC (ICM), Cand.merc. (kom.), and other) and an extensive number of BA Theses MA Semester Projects, and Internship Reports.

Other teaching activities

I have organized and run courses, workshops, and seminars for a variety of external stakeholders beyond academia (e.g. Varefakta, Danfoss, Lego, Danish Veterinary & Food Administration) and participated as invited speaker and panel member in branch-specific and public fora organized by e.g. the Danish Chamber of Commerce, the Confederation of Danish Industry, and NGOs such as Green Future. I have likewise  occasionally taught at other universities (KU, DTU, MGLU/Moscow) and Summer Schools on issues from food innovation to the European cultural and legal convergence. 

Selected publications

Smith, V. (in review) Naming & framing: Understanding the power of words. Abingdon & New York: Routledge.

Smith, V.(2018). Taste the difference – and say it!: The role of sensory language in the multimodal semiotic cocktails of food labelling and web-store presentations. Paper presented at Branding Nations, Products, and Sensory Experiences. Cyprus University of Technology, Limassol, October 2018.

Clement, J., Smith, V., Zlatev, J., Gidlöf, K., & Van de Weijer, J. (2017). Assessing information on food packages. European Journal of Marketing51(1), 219-237.

Smith, V., Barratt, D., & Selsøe Sørensen, H. (2015). Do natural pictures mean natural tastes? Assessing visual semantics experimentally. Cognitive Semiotics8(1), 53-86.

Smith, V., Barratt, D., & Zlatev, J. (2014). Unpacking noun-noun compounds: Interpreting novel and conventional food names in isolation and on food labels. Cognitive Linguistics, 25(1), 99-147.

Smith, V. (2014). The semiotic cocktail of food labelling : Mixed and consumed. Paper presented at  The First Conference of the International Association for Cognitive Semiotics (IACS-2014), Lund, September 2014.

Smith, V., Green-Petersen, D., Møgelvang-Hansen, P., Christensen, R. H. B., Qvistgaard, F., & Hyldig, G. (2013). What’s (in) a real smoothie. A division of linguistic labour in consumers’ acceptance of name–product combinations? Appetite63, 129-140.

Durst-Andersen P., Smith, V., & Nedergaard Thomsen, O. (2013). Towards a cognitive-semiotic typology of motion verbs. In: C. Paradis et al., eds., The construal of spatial meaning: Windows into conceptual space (pp. 118-143). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Smith, V., Clement, J.; Møgelvang-Hansen, P.; & Selsøe Sørensen, H. (2011). Assessing in-store food-to-consumer communication from a fairness perspective: An integrated approach. International Journal of Specialized Communication, 33(1-2), 84-106.

Smith, V., Møgelvang-Hansen, P., & Hyldig, G. (2010). Spin versus fair speak in food labelling: A matter of taste? Food Quality and Preference21(8), 1016-1025.

Micklitz, H.-W.; Smith, V.; & Rørdam, M., eds. (2010). New challenges for the assessment of fairness in a common market. Florence: European University Institute Press.

Smith, V. (2010). Lexical semantics negotiated : Assessing the fairness and misleading potential of established and novel food names. In: I. Korzen & E. Cresti, eds., Language, cognition and identity: Extensions of the endocentric/exocentric language typology (pp. 191-209). Firenze : Florence: Firenze University Press.

Zlatev, J.; Smith, V.,; Weijer, J. van de; & Skydsgaard, C. (2010). Noun-noun compounds for fictive food products: Experimenting in the borderzone of semantics and pragmatics. Journal of Pragmatics, 42(10), 2799-2813.

Smith, V. (2007). Linguistic diversity versus legal unity in Europe: Getting beyond the chicken-and-egg discussions. Journal of Comparative Law2, 120-136.

Selective titles targeting Business in Society issues beyond Academia (indicative examples):

Smith, V. (2019) Ikke-vildledende mærkning af fødevarer …også ud over lovens krav?. Workshop at Varefakta, May 2019.

Forbrugerrådet Tænk & FairSpeak-Gruppen (2015). Fair snak på fødevareemballage: 11 dogmer til fødevareproducenter og butikker for kommunikation via fødevareemballager. URL: http://dokumentation.taenk.dk/dokumentation/taler-og-indlaeg/fair-snak-paa-foedevareemballage

Smith, V., Selsøe Sørensen, H., Clement, J., & Møgelvang-Hansen, P. (2015). Fair snak på fødevareemballager: 84 fairnesspreincipper. Copenhagen: Ex Tuto.

Clement, J., Selsøe Sørensen, H. & Smith, V. (2010). SMV-rapport: Ærlig kommunikation gennem innovativ design af emballage til nye fødevarer. Copenhagen: FairSpeak.

Smith, V. Ohm Søndergaard, M., Clement, J., Møgelvang-Hansen, P., Selsøe Sørensen, H., & Gabrielsen, G. (2009).  Fair Speak : Scenarier for vildledning på det danske fødevaremarked. Copenhagen: Ex Tuto.

Publications sorted by:
Viktor Smith / Naming and Framing : Understanding the Power of Words across Disciplines, Domains, and Modalities.
New York : Routledge 2021, 109 p. (Routledge Studies in Multimodality)
Book > peer review
Viktor Smith; Daniel Barratt / Varefakta-mærket fra forbrugertillid til købsbeslutning. : Diagnostisk eyetracking-test af forbrugeres inddragelse af Varefakta-mærket i købsbeslutninger under simuleret e-handel.
København : Copenhagen Business School, CBS 2020, 29 p.
Viktor Smith / Hvad blev der af smags- og spiseoplevelsen på danske fødevareemballager (og i net-butikken)? - og kan der laves om på det
Poster session presented at Fælles IFD-projektansøgning, 2018, 18 p.
Viktor Smith / Naming and Framing : Understanding the Power of Words.
Paper presented at Ordenes magt og konsekvenser for samfund, politik og business, 2018
Viktor Smith / Taste the Difference – and Say It! : The Role of Sensory Language in the Multimodal Semiotic Cocktails of Food Labelling and Web-store Presentations.
Paper presented at Branding Nations, Products, and Sensory Experiences, 2018
Paper > peer review
Jesper Clement; Viktor Smith; Jordan Zlatev; Kerstin Gidlöf; Joost Van de Weijer / Assessing Information on Food Packages
In: European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 51, No. 1, 2017, p. 219-237
Journal article > peer review
Viktor Smith / (Re)vitalizing Sensory Language on Food Packages in Danish – and Beyond
In: Book of Abstract FACT 2016: 2nd International Conference Food and Culture in Translation. Catania : Universita' Degli Studi Di Catania 2016, 1 p., p. 66
Conference abstract in proceedings
Viktor Smith / Byens rørsystemer : Når teknikere bygger de samme ting på forskellige sprog.
In: Globe: A Journal of Language, Culture and Communication, No. Special Issues 1, 5.2016, p. 37-56
Journal article > peer review
Rita Cancino (Editor) ; Lotte Dam (Editor) ; Aase Voldgaard Larsen (Editor) ; Viktor Smith (Editor) / Global kommunikation i lokalt perspektiv : Når vi ikke taler samme sprog - Festskrift i anledning af Per Durst-Andersens 60 års fødselsdag.
Aalborg : Aalborg Universitetsforlag 2016, 139 p. (Globe: A Journal of Language, Culture and Communication, No. Special Issue 1)
Anthology > peer review
Daniel Barratt; Ahmad Zaki Faizi; Viktor Smith / Sensory Semantics of Food Products : How Sensory Language Affects Perception and Choice of Food Products .
In: Book of Abstract FACT 2016: 2nd International Conference Food and Culture in Translation. Catania : Universita' Degli Studi Di Catania 2016, 1 p., p. 12
Conference abstract in proceedings
More results... (total 60 results)
Academic Interests

Business in Society, Private-Public collaboration in practice, Responsible Communication, Multimodal Communication, Cognitive Semiotics.

Also occasional consulting, lecturing, training, etc. for external stakeholders in line with my academic interests.

Research Projects
Outside activities

Currently no outside activities