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First Training Programme in Myanmar

Within the education programme, the ESOMAR Foundation is organising a 5 day training alongside MMSA (Myanmar Marketing Services Association.) Free to the delegates, the idea behind this 5 day training bonanza is to share knowledge from all over the world with local researchers living and working in Myanmar. The programme will run from 13 – 15 August 2014 and focuses on:

Introduction to Market Research and Proposal Writing

  • The different types of MR (desk research, audits, panels, ad hoc, qual, quant etc)
  • The future of the MR Industry
  • Ethics and professionalism
  • Proposal writing, understanding and challenging the brief.

Quantitative Research

  • The different data collection approaches
  • Different types of Quant Research (Ad Testing, U&A, Customer Satisfaction etc)
  • Questionnaire design

Basic Statistics

  • Sampling and Weighting
  • Sample size, significance testing

Strategic Analysis, Turning Data into Insights, Adding Value

  • Strategic Analysis
  • Generating Inights
  • Presentations and Report Writing

VOLUNTEER TRAINERS

The MMSA and ESOMAR Foundation would like to thank our trainer volunteers for giving their time and energy to help researchers in Myanmar. Your generosity is truly appreciated.

Phyllis Macfarlane

Phyllis Macfarlane is a life-long market researcher – starting her career as an assistant statistician, and culminating as Managing Director of GfK NOP, one of the UK’s largest market research companies. Her key interests as a researcher are international, B2B, market measurement and customer satisfaction studies. As a manager, it is people development. Phyllis is currently Project Manager for GfK’s CSR initiative ‘Training in Africa’ – where the GfK Verein is funding masters degrees and interviewer training to improve the quality of market research in Africa. This initiative will be rolled out to China and other emerging markets beginning in 2014.

Anna Thomas

Anna Thomas is MD and Director of Nunwood Australia. Anna has worked for nearly 20 years in strategic market research, is a trained coach and workshop facilitator and is highly experienced in using customer information – both qual and quant – to bring about business transformation. Since 2010, Anna has led the development and growth of Nunwood’s Asia Pacific business, which includes a team of consultants, researchers, analytics specialists and technical experts.  A Cambridge graduate, Anna is a member of ESOMAR, the British Psychological Society and the Market Research Society. She speaks French and Spanish, holds a postgraduate certificate in Law, and has spoken about applied strategic research and method innovation at conferences in Europe, UK, North America and Australia.

 Anagha Kanhere

Anagha has over 8 years of market research & statistical consultation experience across a variety of sectors including Banking, Insurance, FMCG, Education, Travel, Retail, Telecoms and Utilities. She has extensive experience of working with global brands, on market research studies including multi-sector Customer experience Management programs, U & A studies, New Product Development, ROI modelling and Segmentation. She holds postgraduate degrees in Social Statistics and International Marketing Management.

Silvina Neder

Argentinian born, Silvina’s market research career began in 1991 as a quantitative researcher in British American Tobacco (BAT). In 1997, she obtained her second postgraduate degree: Master in Business Administration. Her enthusiasm as an insights finder, lead her to move to the agency side: In 2005, she founded NEDER Statistics & Insights, an agency aimed at designing the best study for each client and at implementing it with the highest quality standards. Since then, Neder’s client portfolio includes the most renowned fast moving consumer goods and services companies such as Coca Cola, Bimbo, Master Card, Hewlett Packard, Movistar, Telefonica, Repsol, General Motors, Akzo Nobel, Lilly, Pfizer, amongst others. At the moment, she is based in Spain, helping organisations from different countries to research in Latin America.

awards capacity building grant to MMSA

Awarding capacity building grant to MMSA

ESOMAR Foundation announced today that it has awarded its first capacity building grant to the MMSA. The grant, worth a minimum of €3000, is being used to fund a 5 day training workshop alongside MMSA in Myanmar. The objective of the grant is to share market research knowledge from all over the world with researchers in Myanmar.

ESOMAR Foundation’s President Gunilla Broadbent commented, “We are very grateful to be able to help the Myanmar market, social and opinion research industry gain access to training and education. None of this would be possible without our volunteers from all over the world and the incredible dedication of the team at MMSA.”

ESOMAR Foundation, founded in 2013, is the Foundation of the market, social, and opinion research sector channeling the expertise and resources of the sector to achieve social good. Through its funding programmes, the ESOMAR Foundation supports researcher families facing emergency situations, access to education on market, social, and opinion research, charities, and the philanthropic sector.

photo-volunteers-Myanmar-trainingMMSA President Anna Khin Khin Kyawt commented “In my 23rd year of being an industry leader in Myanmar, I have seen many
firsts. I am so proud to be hosting this first ESOMAR Foundation training event  and to have brought this in partnership with the ESOMAR Foundation to our market. Our market researchers really need this training for the quality of the profession, I am delighted to support the initiative.”

Myanmar Marketing Services Association (MMSA) is the key industry grouping of local companies and agencies involved in the Myanmar marketing sector for decades. Its core aim is to build the main platform for local organizations to share knowledge, expertise and in-depth understanding of the Myanmar market and its consumers.

This aligns fully with the objectives of ESOMAR Foundation’s Education Programme, which supports innovative projects that break down barriers and give a chance to the current and future generations of market researchers coming from all walks of life.

mmsaBoth ESOMAR Foundation and the MMSA would like to thank the 4 volunteers who have given so generously of their time to make the training a reality – Anna Thomas, Silvina Neder, Anagha Kanhere and Phyllis Macfarlane.

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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Kim Smouter at +31-20-589-7818 or email at info@esomarfoundation.net.

Mingalabar Myanmar!

Mingalabar Myanmar!

There are certain countries in the world where access to even the most basic research training can be extremely difficult. The ESOMAR Foundation is hoping to launch its first training programme in Myanmar to help deal with the lack of training opportunities in the country.

Read this article from Research World November/December 2013 o learn more about research in Myanmar

Mingalabar Myanmar!
By Marita Schimpl

What comes to mind when you think of Myanmar?

Nowadays, most people might say Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s pro-democracy leader and Nobel Peace Prize laureate. Foreign investors, many of whom are still not sure if the country is called Myanmar or Burma, may praise the huge untapped market potential since 55-60 million locals are hoping to finally improve their standard of living by owning a refrigerator or the latest digital gadget.

But how do you market a brand that is well known globally but often unknown to Myanmar’s consumers?

Experience Myanmar yourself!

Any visitor to Yangon, the country’s largest city (with a population of six million), can breathe in the optimism of change. Electronic shops burst with the latest home appliances or TVs. Local hipsters sit in modern-style coffee shops drinking iced lattes and showing off their latest smartphones or iPads. More and more young people have traded their longyis for skinny jeans. Urban women would rather use Western make-up when going out than decorate their faces with thanaka (a yellowish-white cosmetic paste made from ground bark).

On the surface, Yangon may appear to be changing quickly. However, to understand the values, needs and traditions that are still determining local lives, one has to look behind the few familiar signs of global culture. We are quick to compare Myanmar with what we know: we may think or expect Myanmar to be like Thailand, Cambodia or Vietnam.

In fact, there are 135 officially recognised ethnic groups in Myanmar; 70% are Burmese. That is why the country is called Myanmar – to include other ethnic groups as well. Those ethnic groups have their own distinct traditions and languages. Not all speak Burmese (the ‘official’ language).

Demand for local research is growing

Most people are surprised when they hear that Myanmar is not a white spot on the global research map. In fact, we have the Myanmar Research Association, which has the biggest local, privately owned research agencies under its belt. Global agencies have also recently set up shop.

One needs to remember that international companies operated in Myanmar until the late 90s/early 2000s. Therefore, market and social research is not a new discipline in a country that got off economic sanctions a year and a half ago.

Myanmar
In this picture taken on August 17, 2012 Myanmar farmers collect paddy seedlings from flooded fields to replant in Ayeyawaddy Division of Myanmar outside Yangon. Recent heavy rains have flooded thousands of acres of paddy fields as seasonal monsoon rains hit the Ayeyawaddy delta region.
AFP PHOTO/Ye Aung Thu

What can I expect?

Conducting qualitative research in Myanmar is similar to the process in other Asian countries. Focus groups, home visits, shop-alongs, diaries, ethnographic approaches – they are all there. Make sure you recruit extraverted, creative respondents, and you will be amazed how openly they discuss most topics.

However, there are a few things you need to consider when running quantitative research, because infrastructure is a big issue:

  • Telephone and internet penetration is way too low to use online research tools or CATI for data collection. Those methods may be used for special urban target groups only. Due to very slow internet connections, it is almost impossible to upload or download videos or do data entry online.
  • All interviews are conducted face to face with PAPI, so studies may take six to 12 weeks, depending on the sample size; travel to remote areas can be slow due to bad roads; printing a few thousand questionnaires takes a few days; and fieldwork updates can’t be done daily, as interviewers may be in areas without any reliable telephone or internet connection. Be sure that there are no weddings or religious ceremonies going on when you want to do fieldwork in a village, as you won’t find anybody home. Everyone attends!
  • Depending on the topic of the research, one needs to get the permission of central and/or local authorities. If the fieldwork is conducted outside the urban centres of Yangon and Mandalay, it is a good idea to inform local authorities. Clients need to understand this and show flexibility.
  • The last national census was conducted in 1983, meaning there is no reliable data on population structures that could be used for weighting any sample. The next census will be conducted in 2014. Until then, we don’t even know the exact population size of the country with 100% certainty.

None of these points should put you off, as projects run smoothly in Myanmar.

Come out yourself, and you will experience very friendly locals who have not been influenced by global consumer culture on a big scale (yet). Try to learn at least one word and people will greet you with a big smile: Mingalabar (Hello).

AuthorMarita Schimpl is head of market research at Myanmar Survey Research and ESOMAR country representative for Myanmar