The Market Research Society Northern Ireland

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Angeline Martin

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The Business of Evidence:  A Market Research Society NI Event (Belfast)

The UK research market is larger than the music industry according to a Market Research Society industry report.  The business of evidence market currently generates £4.8 billion in GVA and has been growing at a astounding rate of 65% since 2012.

Guests at the Market Research Society NI event (located in Belfast), discovered that despite the sector already employing nearly 73,000 full time equivalents, attracting high calibre talent is one of the key challenges for the future.  Certainly more than one third of those surveyed believe the market research sector will face a future skills shortage, particularly in areas such as data science.

The discussion panellists, following The Business of Evidence presentation, debated the need for the general public to demand evidence to support statements made to the media.  With recent Brexit and US election campaigns criticised for the inaccuracy of the information used, it appears that false or misleading public statements enable manipulation of the media are without consequences.  This misinformation, regardless of whether inadvertent or deliberate, is creating a society where the general public does not know what news sources to trust.

Massive thanks to PwC for hosting the event and to Julie McClean for presenting the findings of their report.  Thanks also go to Market Research Society NI Chair and CARD Group Chief Executive, our own Albert Hamilton as well as panellists Fiona Rooney of Ipsos MORI, Jeff Peel of Quadriga Consulting and Honor Mallon of PwC.