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Join the Making a Difference Competition!

The centrepiece of the ‘Making a Difference’ programme is an annual competition to highlight and promote how research has made a real difference to Not-for-Profits.

Send your entry by 13 April!

There will be three prizes; one for the best international NFP case study, one for the best local/domestic NFP case study and one for the most innovative case study.

This competition aims at raising awareness of the impact of great research on Not-For-Profits. Currently, many Not-For-Profits see research only in terms of population-level facts and figures on poverty, sanitation, medicine, education etc. They are mostly unaware of the immense value that great qualitative, ethnographic and new research methodologies can have on improving the effectiveness of their work. Our hope is through this initiative – which will highlight ‘Make a Difference’ case studies – to encourage the use of more insightful and inventive research and massively increase the overall impact of market research in building a better world!

Join the competition: all non-profit cases are welcome whether they are international, national or local!

More info on: http://www.esomarfoundation.org/making-a-difference-competition/

Research Now SSI Establishes Tax-Deductible Fund To Benefit Families of Davao Fire Victims

The ESOMAR Foundation Inaugurates the Giving With €10,000 Donation

Dallas, Texas, (February 15, 2018) – Research Now SSI, the global leader in digital market research data and marketing services, announces that it has established a tax-deductible fund to collect donations for the families of its 37 employees who perished in the Dec. 23, 2017 NCCC Mall fire in Davao, Philippines, where the company had a call center.  The company is pleased also to announce that the ESOMAR Foundation has made the first donation to the fund for €10,000.

The ESOMAR Foundation affiliated with ESOMAR, the global insights community founded 70 years ago to promote the value of market, opinion, and social research and data analytics — has among its stated goals the mission to “help families that face economic hardships as a result of their family member having worked in the field of market, social, and opinion research.”

Gary S. Laben, CEO of Research Now SSI, states, “The concern, strong sense of community and enormous generosity of ESOMAR offers great comfort in what has been a devastating time for the families of those who died and for Research Now SSI. I want to acknowledge the foundation’s having proactively reached out to us in a heartfelt gesture of professional solidarity to see how they could help alleviate suffering in the aftermath of this terrible event.”

John Kearon, President of the ESOMAR Foundation, says, “Together with ESOMAR President Niels Schillewaert and our entire ESOMAR team, we offer our deep condolences to the families affected by this tragedy, as well as to all of Research Now SSI around the world. Each and every member of our organization was eager to show our sympathies and support in a way that would directly benefit the families of those who perished.”

Research Now SSI previously launched a fundraising effort on Go Fund Me, which raised over $119,000 which is being distributed among the Davao families. Research Now established the latest, tax-deductible fund on the Allegro platform, which allows for U.S. tax-deductible 501(c)3 status and issues an annual statement. Laben notes, “We created this fund for our investors, the industry at large, and organizations such as the ESOMAR Foundation in response to their concern for the families and offers of help.” Donations can be made by going to Allegro’s website, https://allegrosolutions.org/ and entering the code Phil-RNSSI-Davao.001.

About Research Now SSI Research Now SSI is the global leader in digital market research data for better insights and business decisions. The company provides world-class research data solutions that enable better results for more than 4,000 market research, consulting, media, healthcare, and corporate clients, and is recognized as the quality, scale, and customer satisfaction leader in the market research industry. For more information, please go to www.researchnow.com and www.surveysampling.com.


Editors, for more information, contact:

Kate Brunkhorst

Research Now SSI



John Kearon

‘Making a Difference’ to Not-for-Profits


A message from John Kearon, President of the ESOMAR Foundation

Researchers are a wonderful lot.

We’re not particularly loud, extrovert or nakedly ambitious.

But we are generally curious, knowledgeable and keen to make a difference.

And a world in turmoil needs inventive solutions from researchers at their best, more than ever.

Which is exactly why the ESOMAR Foundation was set up, to build a better world using the know-how and resources of the Market Research community.

The Foundation is still small and run almost exclusively on a volunteer basis. So to maximise its impact with limited resources, we’ve decided to focus the Foundation on ‘Making a Difference’ to Not-for-Profits.  To this end, we’ve created an annual ‘Making a Difference’ programme, culminating each year at the ESOMAR Congress, with a celebration of the ways in which our community of the research willing has helped make the world a better place.

‘Making a Difference’ Competition [Entries by 13 April 2018]


The competition is the centre-piece of the Foundation’s ‘Making a Difference’ programme. It highlights and promotes how the best of research has made a significant difference to Not-For-Profits (NFP). If you think you have a case study that shows how research has really helped a Not-for-Profit, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE enter it to the competition before 13 April. You find all details on how to enter the competition on the ‘Making a Difference’ Annual Competition page on the ESOMAR Foundation website. All submissions will be added to the Foundation’s ‘Making a Difference’ online library and made freely available, to inspire and promote the use of market research in helping to build a better world.

There will be three ‘Making a Difference’ prizes; one for the best international NFP case study, one for the best local/domestic NFP case study and one for the most innovative case study. The winners will be announced at ESOMAR’s Asia Pacific Conference on 15 May. Each of the three winners win a donation for their featured Not-for-Profit and invited to present their work at a special ‘Making a Difference’ session at the 2018 ESOMAR Congress in Berlin on 25 September.

To help promote the impact of great research on NFPs, the Foundation is looking for speaking opportunities for the three winners, at Not-For-Profit conferences. In addition, ESOMAR have generously offered a ‘Making a Difference’ slot at every one of their conferences. The Foundation will invite presentations from those who submitted a ‘Commended’ case study and are located in the country where the ESOMAR conference is being held.

Raise awareness of the impact of great research on Not-For-Profits

Currently, many Not-For-Profits see research only in terms of population level facts and figures on poverty, sanitation, medicine, education etc. They are mostly unaware of the immense value that great qualitative, ethnographic and new research methodologies can have on improving the effectiveness of their work. Our hope is through the ever-increasing database and promotion of ‘Making a Difference’ case studies, we can encourage usage of more insightful and inventive research and massively increase the overall impact of market research in building a better world.

My hope for the coming years, is by securing the Foundation’s funding, focussing on helping Not-for-Profits and creating a large ‘community of the research willing’, that together we can build and extend the impact of the Foundation’s tremendous work to date, in building a better world.

So, join the ‘Making a Difference’ Annual Competition, help us celebrate the ways in which our community of the research willing has helped make the world a better place.


Cambodian Scholarship Awarded by ESOMAR Foundation, Women In Research and Unilever

Scholarship goal reached for Esther Tot in Cambodia to pursue the English-based Bachelor Degree program in International Business at National University of Management, Cambodia





15 January 2018 – Amsterdam, NL – Esther Tot of Cambodia was the latest recipient of a scholarship funded through a partnership of the ESOMAR Foundation, a charitable organization representing the market research industry, global non-profit Women in Research (WIRe) and Unilever. Tot will be pursuing an English-based Bachelor Degree program in International Business at the National University of Management (NUM), Cambodia.

“We are so pleased to see the market research community continue to see the value in funding scholarships in economically challenged regions, the latest being in Cambodia. This scholarship will provide Esther the opportunity to pursue her studies in order to enter a rewarding career in market research.” says John Kearon, President, ESOMAR Foundation, “Our partnership with WIRe and Unilever is incredibly valuable in investing in future talent like Esther.”

The recipient, Esther Tot, is a Cambodian native from a disadvantaged socio-economic background. Through the scholarship, Esther will have the opportunity to pursue her degree and a future career in market research. Through funding the education of women like Esther, the organizations involved help to advance the voice of minority women in the market research industry.

Women in Research (WIRe) raised the funding for the scholarship through outreach to their global community, and funds raised were supported by a matching donation from Unilever. WIRe is the only non-profit organization solely dedicated to the advancement of women in the market research industry, providing career development and educational opportunities for women while supporting gender diversity initiatives. Unilever, a global consumer goods company with a strong focus on charitable initiatives—especially in emerging markets—matched the WIRe community’s contribution dollar for dollar to the scholarship fund.

“The ESOMAR Foundation scholarship initiative aligns perfectly with our goal of advancing the contributions and voice of women in research.” says Kristin Luck, founder of Women in Research. “Ongoing support from our community for these types of scholarship programs reinforces that arming women with the tools they need for success is of great importance to our global community. We are so pleased to be able to help Esther achieve her educational goals.”

Based on the success of this Scholarship program, ESOMAR Foundation and WIRe plan to continue to collaborate in 2018 to fund additional scholarship initiatives in emerging or disadvantaged markets.

About ESOMAR Foundation
ESOMAR Foundation is a charitable Foundation representing the Market, Social and Opinion Research industry. Our industry has a wealth of knowledge and experience that can be applied to every aspect of society to ensure a more transparent, reliable and sustainable world. The ESOMAR Foundation is the charity arm of ESOMAR, the global industry association of market, social and opinion research. http://www.esomarfoundation.org

About Women in Research 
Women in Research (WIRe) is the only non-profit organization solely dedicated to the advancement of women in the market research industry, supporting educational programming and networking events across five continents. WIRe programming also facilitates leadership, entrepreneurship, mentoring and other career development goals. WIRe’s mission is to advance the contributions and voice of women in research, both for themselves and the greater good of the market research industry. www.womeninresearch.org


Media Contact: Jessica Sage, jessica@womeninresearch.org

The Christmas Charity Draw is over! We have the winners!

Congratulations to the lucky winners!

We hope you will enjoy the fabulous prizes so generously donated by 18 companies and people who supported our initiative.

Our thanks also go to all those who decided to buy tickets. Some won some didn’t but we know that your small (or big) gesture has demonstrated your generosity and willingness to support us!

For this, we THANK YOU warmly!

Read about the prizes and the winners here!


Make a Difference!

We are getting close to the end of the year festivities! It’s that time of the year when donating comes as a natural gesture of warmth and solidarity.



We would like to thank our many donors who are filling this special time of the year with joy and generousity!

A big thank you goes to:

System1, the global marketing research and advertising company, who took part in ‘Making a Difference’ mile, dressed as Santa’s to raise money for the ESOMAR Foundation.

In total 75 staff from System1 ran in the charity event, with the company sponsoring each runner, bringing the total funds raised to €4,250

ENI Recruitment who is donating 1% of all their permanent placement billings from 1 November 2017 to 14 February 2018 to the ESOMAR Foundation raising so far €1,830 in just under 4 weeks.


Thanks to 20 donors who donated fantastic prizes and the wonderful supporters of the ESOMAR Foundation who are buying tickets for the annual Christmas Charity Draw we have raised so far €1,440 to fund ESOMAR Foundation activities.

You can buy tickets at €30 (each) until 15 December!

Buy here: www.esomarfoundation.org/prizes



Believe in yourself, be confident and don’t be afraid to take chances

This is the third blog from Nutsa Kvitashvili who is following the BA Program of Sociology at Caucasus School of Humanities and Social Sciences. Nutsa is the recipient of the ESOMAR Foundation Scholarship sponsored by Inizio.



It’s been a while since my last blog so I’m going to tell you a little bit about my summer vacation and my studies. I’ve enjoyed my summer vacation a lot. I was in Batumi it’s the second largest city of Georgia and it is located on the coast of the Black Sea in the counrty’s southwest. Batumi is a place which I really enjoy visiting with my friends because of its beautiful walking areas, long boulevards and old 19th century buildings which gives you the feeling that you are in Europe. It was a blast.

Summer has ended and I’m about to start my 4th and last year at Caucasus University. Thinking about my last year of studies makes me sad and excited at the same time. Sad because studying at university is one of the most interesting, thrilling and inspiring experience in life. After spending four years studying, adapting to life after university can be pretty difficult. But at the same time I’m beyond excited because after graduating from university you will start a new journey, a new chapter in life. This is the time in your life when you can reach new heights, the time when everyone has a lot of opportunities but a lot of people miss that chance because they’re afraid to go after them. The important thing is to believe in yourself, be confident and don’t be afraid to take chances.

This year my studies are starting a little bit late because Caucasus University is moving into a new building and all the students are excited about this change because the architecture of the building is very beautiful and has a historical atmosphere.


In this semester I’m going to study a bunch of interesting subjects such as sociology of arts, sociology of religion, visual sociology, sociology of education, etc. I’m very excited about the new semester, new building and new subjects which I’m sure are going to be intriguing and fascinating.

How you can support

If you are a market researcher, a national market research association, an NGO involved in research or a university interested in a scholarship in your country please contact us at info@esomarfoundation.org

Partners & Sponsors

We are always on the lookout for partners and sponsors. If you are an organisation looking to understand more on how you can support us, please find more information here or contact:  info@esomarfoundation.org


Phyllis Macfarlane

ESOMAR Foundation run a session at ESOMAR Congress 2017


A review by Phyllis Macfarlane

The session titled ‘Making the World a Better Place’ aimed at debating some ways forward to help tackle societal issues.



“This is the people’s agenda, a plan of action for ending poverty in all its dimensions, irreversibly, everywhere, and leaving no one behind,” said Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, at the launch of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s)

This session at the ESOMAR 2017 Congress was focussed on ESOMAR Foundation’s objective to help the Development Aid Sector use research more, and more effectively, to achieve ‘better results’, and the Paragon Partnerships’ objective to help the UN to ‘ leave no-one behind’.

To us market researchers it’s obvious that if you try and change behaviour without really understanding people’s thinking and culture, then you are doomed to failure. You might do something that seems perfectly logical to the western mind, but fail to take account of the recipients’ real feelings and emotions, and it just won’t have the effect you expected. So, without the use of good market research, most aid initiatives are likely to fail. And yet this is exactly what happens  – a lot of the time!

The objective of this session was to showcase the work we have done so far, as ESOMAR Foundation and Paragon, to demonstrate the real difference that good market research can make to aid programmes, in the hope that other NGO’s can learn from these examples.

And here are some remarkable facts:

The value of the Development Aid Sector is $142.6B  (http://www.oecd.org/dac/development-aid-rises-again-in-2016-but-flows-to-poorest-countries-dip.htm). If only 1% of this money were spent on market research it would represent a $1.4B opportunity for the MR Industry. So, as Steve Kretschmer, of the Surgo Foundation,  expressed so eloquently in the Panel Session, this is a real opportunity for the Industry, as well as a way to make the world better.  He said that he knows of many, many examples  where much of the aid money spent was invested poorly or completely  wasted because little or no real ‘why?’ insights were identified to guide the design of interventions and solutions.

As the first presenter, Hannah Surabhi, of My Choices Foundation, India, showed – research had informed the actions they took all the way through their programme to prevent sex-trafficking in India  – had they done what they originally intended they would not have achieved anything. In fact, had they not had Final Mile’s insights they would have run with a campaign that likely would have done more harm than good.

Georgina Day, of Street Invest, and Flora Somogyi, of Big Sofa, told how they collaborated to create a remarkable video : ‘I am One in a Million’ from qualitative research findings – with the objective of changing the public perception of Street Children – to humanise them.

Too many people dismiss Street Children as criminals and a threat to society. Or they just see them as passive victims  – who need rescuing. Whereas what is really required is to respect Street Children’s realities. Children live on the streets for many reasons, but they often face similar issues: including violent abuse, stigma, political discrimination and rights violations.

In a recent consultation with street youth, hosted by the United Nations, one child said: “People don’t see street children as human beings. When the police clear us off the street they boast that they are removing the rubbish from town.”  Georgina also told us about Street Invest’s unique quantitative method of counting street children – qual and quant working together, to leave no-one behind.  

Sonia Whitehead of BBC Media Action collaborates with media partners to reach more than 200 million people – they work large-scale, mainly in fragile states, to achieve governance, health and resilience outcomes.

In the last 5 years BBC Media Action have carried out a lot of quantitative research. For example,  in 2016 they surveyed over 20,000 people from across their projects.   However, they have also increasingly realised the need for qualitative research to contextualise it, to understand people more deeply, and to explain the impact that they are having.  Also, frequently project budgets don’t enable them to do quantitative surveys – so more and more they need to construct strong qualitative research that will provide donors with the evidence they need. Just as for commercial research, Qualitative research is used to understand difficult-to-reach populations, explore sensitive subjects, and unpick and understand quantitative data. And it’s just as necessary for the Aid sector to do this as it is for any commercial ‘customer-centric’ company.

Alexis Le Nestour described the journey that Save the Children and ESOMAR Foundation/Paragon are on to find ways to research complex issues like Adolescent Girls’ Diet, and Child Marriage, and Attitudes to Beast-Milk Substitute. He identified that the ways in which NGO’s look at research questions can be quite different from how commercial organisations look at their issues. NGO’s are interested in tackling big, complex questions that are sometimes hard to decompose.  Save the Children works with the most marginalised populations which are not often covered by standard market research: there may not be agencies in the poorest countries in the world or in fragile countries; survey techniques may not be appropriate; some of the issues are extremely sensitive , for example trauma, sexual violence etc,. We do need to work at communication and education if we are to achieve our objective of getting research used more.

In summary, we showed several excellent examples of how Qualitative research had made the difference between success and failure. How  research can change perceptions.

So why isn’t more qual and quant research done by the sector?

  • Because Qual research is not seen as rigorous enough by donors
  • Because it’s difficult to measure change – you have to take a longer term view than most Aid project timetables allow
  • Because we can’t communicate properly – yet!

So, what we’ve learnt in the last year is that it’s difficult to break down the barriers, even when everyone is trying hard.

Acceptance of Qualitative research is low – we just have to work harder to demonstrate how necessary Qual is to solving problems – and we have to improve the quality of qual research practice and reporting.

And the Quant requirement is complex – the data is difficult to collect and the audience can be difficult to find – new, robust, methodologies are required.

Also, NGO’s are conflicted – they hope that new tech approaches will help – but they know that unless the research is properly ‘scientific’ then it won’t be accepted.

But just because it’s difficult doesn’t mean that should give up – au contraire! – we just have to work harder to find the right way to communicate our value – to understand the issues , break them down and find the insights to resolve them.

It sometimes feels like we’re banging our heads against a brick wall – but, as we learnt from both Keynote speakers on the following day at Congress, actually nothing worthwhile is achieved without a great deal of effort. And whilst the Client Panel, also on the following day, showed that the commercial sector has the imperative of wanting research to be done more frequently, faster and cheaper, in the Development Aid sector they need more long term thinking, rigour, and real human understanding. Exactly what we can deliver – if only we can learn the language.

The Market Research Industry  can make the world a better place by helping the UN monitor progress on the 2030 SDG’s and by helping the Development Aid sector do the right things to change lives.

As ESOMAR Foundation and Paragon we are working together for this – we look for your support!

(Originally posted in RWConnect)

Will you be the lucky one?

Or will you surprise a colleague or a family member or a friend with a special gift? Try your luck and help our Education programme!



For the third consecutive year, we are holding a charity prize draw to increase funds for the execution of our activities. By buying tickets you will help us reach our goal of setting up training, scholarships and help researchers in need.

Our donors have spoilt us with exciting prizes. Discover them here.

  • Tickets for the latest Cirque du Soleil show
  • A weekend in a deluxe hotel in a Central America Capital
  • A 3 night stay in a five star hotel in Rio during Carnival
  • A drone
  • Wi-Fi sunglasses
  • … and much more!

Visit our dedicated webpage and support the work of the ESOMAR Foundation!

If you have questions don’t hesitate in contacting us at: info@esomarfoundation.org.

Join the ‘Research for Good’ Competition

Give a chance to the most inspiring example of research for social good in action to be of help to NGOs, their causes and the world!

Submit by 16 December 2017!



Do you do Social research? Does your research contribute to understanding the human condition to better the human condition? Are you keen to showcase your unique insights to the world through an advertising campaign in 2018? The best, most inspiring and surprising example will form the basis of the 2018 advertising campaign supported by System1 advertising agency and Oath (charity arm of AOL).

Inspired by the Meena’ story and willing to portray similar stories where research helped bettering the human condition, the ESOMAR Foundation is running the Research for Good Competition.


How to enter?

Fill in the entry form and send your submission by 16 December 2017!


Understanding the human condition, to better the human condition.

 In collaboration with: