MRS is taking a new direction with its annual market and social research conference next year, promising a radically different programme. Research 2008 will focus on the business impact and effectiveness of research and will examine how the industry can contribute to the bottom-line. In announcing its Call for Contributors, MRS is looking for expertise, creativity and debate.
The theme is more relevant now than ever before – The Great Debate: Changing business through better customer understanding. The programme will focus on the demand-side of research and will feature major business players, whilst continuing to showcase the latest research methodologies and cutting-edge developments. The Research 2008 programme will develop successful formats and ideas introduced at previous conferences and will provide participants with even more opportunity to take part in interactive debates and workshops. These will run alongside conference paper sessions that will this year include several influential clientside speakers.
Chairman of the Conference Programme Team, Crispin Beale (Director of Customer Insight, Intelligence and Analysis, Royal Mail Group plc), explains: “We’ve given next year’s conference a new angle and are concentrating more on business and research effectiveness issues alongside the traditional areas of excellence and innovation in research methodology. We are also aiming to place greater emphasis on interactivity by providing participants with organised networking opportunities. Research 2008 will be more relevant than ever to clientside researchers and promises a greater flexibility in conference formats and a wider variety of participants .”
Research 2008 is to be held at London’s stunning Riverbank Park Plaza Hotel and will run from 18-19 March 2008. The event, which is international in scope, will attract delegates from both the market and social research sectors and the wider business and marketing community, providing them with a critical insight into where research is heading and how it can make an impact on both decision-making and end results.
“We are calling for papers, panellists and ideas for interactive sessions that will stimulate and excite,” continues Crispin. “This conference is about examining the impact of research on business, uncovering end-user trends and reflecting on the best ideas that the worldwide research community has to offer. We also want to encourage debate and increase interaction between researchers and their clients. ”
The key themes for Research 2008 are:
- Ensuring transformation: Providing insight/inspiration and then establishing a partnership between agency and client to ensure that change ‘happens’.
- Research as part of the wider marketing mix: What lessons can be learnt across the traditional marketing divide?
ROI: How to measure it and how to ensure that you’re getting it.
- Business skills and commercial relationships: How agencies are striving toward a more consultative approach to supporting clients.
- Research standards and best practice.
- The international insight community: As clients strive to globalise their business, what challenges do all parties in the insight chain face?
- Online and web-based research: How Web 2.0 and online communities such as Facebook and Linkedin are affecting the industry.
- Futurology: The shape of things to come – cutting edge techniques and bold “society” visions.
Proposed contributions to Research 2008 can be submitted at www.research-live.com/research2008. The entry deadline is Monday 1 October 2007. For more information visit the website or contract Chris Bancroft on