Tag Archives: standards

Leading by Design: A leadership profile of Dr. Ann Cavoukian and her passion for privacy

This post originally appeared on the Sklar Wilton & Associates blog

If you’ve read anything about privacy in the last few years, you’re certain to have come across the name Dr. Ann Cavoukian. And if you don’t recall her name, surely you’ve heard of her concept of Privacy by Design. With all the data breaches we’ve encountered over the last several years and the most recent debacle with Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, the value of privacy has never been more clear.

Ann Cavoukian, Privacy, CanadaPrivacy by Design is the idea that every piece of technology, every website, every tool and process ought to consider how to incorporate concepts of privacy from day one and throughout the entire development process. Historically, many products and services have been, and continue to be, built such that privacy is an afterthought – once the product or service has been fully developed, people try to figure out how to retroactively apply privacy components. This strategy can easily lead to unnecessary collection of data, awkward programming work-arounds, and privacy policies that are far too complex for regular people to understand. By accounting for privacy from the start, through Privacy by Design, many of these problems can be prevented or simplified.

Ann’s career is impressive. She had Privacy by Design in mind before serving three terms and 17 years as the Information and Privacy Commissioner for Ontario, the largest province in Canada. Now, she is a distinguished visiting professor and Executive Director at Ryerson Universities Privacy and Big Data Institute. She is also a Senior Fellow of the Ted Rogers Leadership Centre at Ryerson University, and a Faculty Fellow of the Center for Law, Science & Innovation at Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University.

Her awards are numerous and include being named one of the Top 25 Women of Influence in Canada, ‘Power 50’ by Canadian BusinessTop 100 Leaders in Identity, and was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal by the Governor General of Canada for taking her Privacy by Design concept globally.

What’s inspiring about Ann’s leadership is that she never wavered from her commitment to Privacy by Design. Twenty years ago, digital privacy wasn’t a thing. AOL Instant messenger, Yahoo Messenger, MSN messenger, and LiveJournal existed. Skype showed up in 2003, Facebook in 2004, and Reddit and YouTube in 2005. To the average person 20 years ago, privacy was boring and manifested as physically locked filing cabinets in locked rooms – impenetrable without two keys. Yet Ann had the foresight to realize that planning for digital privacy would become paramount. She’s held strong to this message for more than two decades.

Today, her Privacy by Design strategy has traversed the globe and been translated into 40 languages. In 2010, International Privacy Regulators unanimously passed a Resolution recognizing Privacy by Design as an international standard. As we progress with integrating artificial intelligence, machine learning, and deep learning with our marketing technologies, we must take care to implement Privacy by Design. Not because regulators say we should, but because Ann has repeatedly demonstrated that it’s the right thing to do.

You can find Ann on TwitterLinkedinWikipedia, at Ryerson University’s Privacy by Design Centre of Excellence where she is the Distinguished Expert-in-Residence, or her foundation Global Privacy and Security By Design.

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This post was written in my role as a consultant for Sklar Wilton & Associates. SW&A has worked for more than 30 years with some of Canada’s most iconic brands to help them grow their brand, shape corporate culture, build successful innovation, define portfolio strategies, and maximize research ROI. They offer strategic advice, business facilitation, research management, qualitative/quantitative research, and analytics. SW&A was recognized as a Great Workplace for Women in 2018, and the Best Workplace in Canada for Small Companies in 2017 by the Great Place To Work® Institute. Inquire about their services here.


Voxpopme 6: How does market research maintain trust when fake news is perceived to be rife?

Along with a group of market resevoxpopme logoarchers from around the world, I was asked to participate in Voxpopme Perspectives – an initiative wherein insights industry experts share ideas about a variety of topics via video. You can read more about it here or watch the videos here. Viewers can then reach out over Twitter or upload their own video response. I’m more of a writer so you’ll catch me blogging rather than vlogging. 🙂

Episode 6: How does market research maintain trust and authority in modern times where fake news and misinformation are perceived to be rife?

There are a few things we can do.

First, despite how expertise is being discredited more and more these days, let’s be more open and transparent about our credentials. More than simply degrees and experience, let’s talk about our membership in recognized industry associations such as Insights Association, MRIA, MRS, AMSRS, and Esomar, as well as ISO certifications. Let’s do more than simply mention we’re members, and instead start our conversations with that fact. Let’s describe what it means to be a member in good standing in terms of the code of standards and ethics we abide by. Let’s put those logos on the first page of our reports, and even include with them some of the ethics and standards statements that are most relevant to the specific project. Let’s use these as reminders for our clients that we always act in their best interest, and in the best interest of the research project, even if the results don’t work out the way we had hoped.

Second, let’s be more transparent with clients. Let’s tell clients about all of the strengths and weaknesses of our research processes, about the things that changed unexpectedly along the way, even if it means disappointing them. When we can’t achieve the response rate, sample size, or cost per complete that they require, let’s tell them right from the beginning and be clear about why it can’t be done. When the results we generate are completely unexpected and don’t line up with our hypotheses or norms, let’s be open and honest about what might have happened and whether there might be a problem. Let’s worry less about not winning a job, and more about demonstrating our commitment to the integrity of results. The secondary bonus of this transparency is that we can educate less experienced buyers on how research can be positively and negatively impacted by a variety of known and unknown variables so that they will be more informed buyers in the future.

Third, let’s be better public advocates. When we see our research in the media, let’s ensure the results, conclusions, and recommendations are clearly properly represented. And when they aren’t, let’s get in touch with the media to help them understand what the issue is, including telling them why margin of error or making a certain generalization isn’t appropriate. And if they refuse to correct the misinterpretation, let’s make a public statement to right the wrong, perhaps with a note on your website sharing details about how the information should be properly interpreted. And along the way, if we learn that certain media channels regularly misinterpret results, let’s reconsider working with those channels and even the clients that work with those channels. Every one of us has a part to play in helping to ensure our research results are properly portrayed.

Non-Probability Sampling and Online Panel: They’re all grown up now

Written by
Annie Pettit, Canadian Chair of ISO TC225
Debrah Harding, UK Chair
Elissa Molloy, Australian Chair

In the seven years since the creation of the quality standard ISO 26362, the use of online panels for market, opinion and social research has experienced massive growth and evolution. The standard was extremely useful in helping both clients and vendors explain and understand the technical aspects of what is now a ‘traditional’ online panel. And while online panels are now default sample sources for many researchers, new options that must also be considered have been developed since then.

In the online world, we have seen the introduction of panels that use not ‘traditional’ email invitations but rather options such as pop-up intercepts, or requiring people to visit a specific website and select from available research opportunities, or offering opportunities from pre-roll webpages. We now have to consider whether automated inventory and survey routing is appropriate for our needs. And of course, we now have the option to engage panel and sample brokers who will find sample providers for us.

The great success of online sample led to the decline of offline sample in rich areas of the world. But don’t let that fool you. There still exist large communities of people around the world where access to online services, or financial resources, means that advanced online surveys are simply not feasible. Offline panels are still very necessary and important in many communities and for many types of research.

And, what may seem surprising to some is that, now, in both offline and online environments, we must consider whether the sample or panel has probability or nonprobability characteristics.

In the time that our sector has greatly advanced researchers’ capabilities, people have also advanced in their responses to surveys.  For some, answering surveys is now a normal activity for people, many of whom participate in one or more panels, in addition to innumerable surveys from ad hoc outreach programs and end-client research studies. Participants are more familiar than ever with techniques for increasing their chances of qualifying for incentives as well as techniques for completing surveys as quickly as possible, sometimes with less than good intentions and sometimes as a reaction to poor quality research tools and services.

It is clear that we have reached a new stage with samples where both offline and online sample have been accepted as valid and reliable techniques, each with a host of new intricate technical requirements.

On March 11 and 12, representatives from around the world, including Canada, UK, USA, The Netherlands, Australia, Japan, Austria, and more, will gather in London, England. There, we will discuss and debate the advancements our industry has made and how we can incorporate those advancements into the ISO standards. Our goal will be to update the online panel standard to better reflect the current and future state of sampling for market, opinion and social research. Also high on the agenda will be the new draft ISO standard for digital analytics and web analyses, which aims to develop the service requirements for digital research services.  These leaders will also bring to light the global differences in research requirements and practice, to help solidify the wider issue of how the ISO research standards can best serve the research sector well into the future.

Best practices in Market Research/Consumer & Shopper Insights Kamal Sharma, Hershey Canada and Susan Innes, BMO Financial Group #MRIA15 #MRX

MRIA15,MRIA2015Live blogged from the 2015 MRIA National Conference in Toronto. Any errors or bad jokes are my own.

Best practices in Market Research/Consumer & Shopper Insights
Kamal Sharma, Hershey Canada and Susan Innes, BMO Financial Group

  • Have you ever felt that you could get better insights if…. 🙂
  • Client side researchers need to ask questions up front before reaching out to a supplier
  • KAMAL SHARMAQuestions to help with transparency – WHY are you doing the resaerch, HOW will the research be used, WHAT business decisions will be made, WHO do you want to speak to, WHERE do you want to do the research, WHEN do you need this information, HOW MUCH are you willing to spend
  • Budget sometimes dictates what research gets done
  • Is management using this or lower level employees? Is it strategy or tactics or product?
  • Put your specific requirements in the RFP – e.g., do you want daily updates on recruitment efforts
  • If you know someone hates pie charts or loves bar charts, then the client needs to tell the vendor. The vendor needs to know the hot buttons, the dreaded words, the current fads, or the project will fail.
  • If incremental costs occur, say so immediately. Have a conversation right away.
  • Decision makers value variety of sources. Only 1 in 5 marketers are familiar with data [that’s really sad]
  • When you lack synthesis skills, decisions can be disputed, performance measures are misleading, opportunities are overlooked. Marketing researchers can help with this.
  • Address conflicting information in research findings – changing sample sizes, different demographics, different questionnaires, timing
  • You need a lean and scaleable data management/integration tool. It should allow you to identify errors.
  • Topic shift…
  • Think about millennials – aged 16 to 34 – compulsive buyers, purchase snacks for instant consumption, choose items based on taste and accessibility and ease of rationing, brand loyal; they want to support causes – Toms 1 for 1 shoes

  • Prefer fresh organic food and prepared to pay a premium
  • Millennials like a variety of stores, enjoy specialty stores
  • marketing to millennials – word of mouth is important but social media makes it happen a lot more quickly, think of Lay’s chips create your own flavour, market your products from a good for you point of view, nostalgia requires you connect with people on an emotional level, use lots of vibrant colours
  • Topic shift….
  • Client side researchers are looking for answers to questions not 200 pages of descriptive statistics
  • When you go into a meeting, have a one page bullet point of meeting notes. You may not get answers but you ought to ask the questions.
  • Nail the business question up front so the data answers the question being asked.

Data quality standards in mixed mode studies by John Bremer #CASRO #MRX

Live blogging from Nashville. Any error or bad jokes are my own.

– the most boring thing you can do with mobile is take a survey on it [HA! very true]
– it makes boring surveys more convenient than ever before
– dramatic growth in people starting surveys on mobile
– not all survey modes produce the same experience. there is differential completion rates. higher drop out rate on mobile particularly when the surveys get longer. different demographic set on mobile so quotas may overpopulate quickly.
– completion rates differ on mobile by country
– many people take surveys on multiple modes and this happens in every country. In the US, 60% of people ONLY take surveys on mobile [did i hear that right?]
– how do we treat quality in mixed mode studies. how should quality techniques be applied?
– why don’t we put quotas on mobile, should we?
– where 8% of people suspended a survey on tablet or computer, 20% of mobile phone starts were suspends
– tablets end up looking a lot of like computers
– think about your speeding metric. survey lengths differ greatly by mode. so if you’re including mobile phones times in you calculation, that raises the median time and raises the speeding time so that you’re cutting out more computer people than you ought to. you might need to use device specific speeder rules. [tell me now, who does this! we ought to! Love this 🙂 ]
– one you remove speeders, you can use a generic rule for random responding and straightlining
– they have a dataset of people who have taken an omnibus on a computer and on a mobile. it’s a matched dataset. [and John wonders, is it omnibii? 🙂 ]
– mobile responders always take longer and it gets worse the longer the survey gets. it’s not as far off for a shorter survey.
– we know there is a true mode effect
– must test quality at the mode level, must adjust speeding at mode level
– they recommend 5 to 10 minute survey though people still do 45 minutes on a mobile.
– you cut surveys into modules, they will take all the modules in a row.

[thanks for presenting data and tables John. i like that you don’t dumb things down. we need more of this because researchers KNOW NUMBERS even if people think its funny to say they don’t]

Data Security… Don’t risk being the weakest link #CASRO #MRX

Live blogged in Nashville. Any errors or bad jokes are my own. Any typos are purely the fault of the iPad.

by Peter Milla and Dave Christiansen

CASRO has seen an increase in requests from clients and regulators for data privacy and security compliance
– code of standards
– safe harbor program

COmpliance means confirming to a rule, like a policy or law. CLients want operational transparency.

COmpanies will require 50 percent less business process workers and 500 percent more digital business jobs. especially regulatory analysts and risk professionals. These jobs are generally only in larger companies. This includes privacy officers.

Privacy and security are symbiotic. This can be a crisis for MR. Privacy is appropriate use of the data. security is the confidentiality and integrity of data.
– you cant just destroy data. what about all the backups. the saved copies that everyone has from their piece of the work.
– availability of data could impact life or death in some cases

What drives compliance
– client wants it [i hope vendors want it too. why is because clients want it?]
– legislation or regulation like HIPPA GLB COPAA FTC PIPIDA. you could be accused of unfair trade practice for discontinuing a poor responder.
– gain a competitive advantage

[wow, typing on an iPad keyboard is quiet and completely unobtrusive when you lay it flat! But i cant put pictures or links easily. Sorry.]

ISO 27002 – you cant be certified, you can be compliant

HIPAA compliance case study
– business associates now face liability. Uses not in accordance with BAA. failure to limit PHI. failure to provide breach notification. failure to provide HHS access when required. failure to comply with security rule.
– many companies state one year but they keep it forever

HIPAA compliance
– Protected Health Information PHI.
– employees don’t usually intend to make errors, they just don’t know
– no easy checklist of requirements
– does offer a set of principles. instruction is to take necessary steps to disclose minimum necessary information
– much is process based

HIPAA security rule compliance
– risk analysis – evaluate likelihood of risks, implement appropriate security measures, document those measures, maintaining continuous review and assessment, ensure access control and integrity control, ensure transmission security, keep documentation up to date

BLUE CROSS – just had a breach that affected 80 million US citizens, 25% of the population. names, SIN, birthdays. be sure to use your free annual credit report. Take advantage of free credit monitoring. monitor your children as well. be alert when filing your income taxes.

Top security trends
– cybercrime, privacy and regulation, third party provider threats and breaches, BYOx in the workplace – Bring Your Own Device [like i’m doing right now. are my office security systems on my personal tablet?]

[note to self and everyone. turn the GPS off all of your devices. it is not necessary that every software program knows where you are, where you live, where you work, where your kids live]

Advanced Persistent Threat – APT
– china and Russia and Iran have active cyber espionage, aligned in every industry to take whatever they can, causing information security bar to be raised

CLients expect all their information is safe. need a dedicated person or team. CISSP, CISM, CISA, ISO, SDLC. [we have this person. they went to every single office in every country over the last couple weeks to remind every single person just how serious security issues are.]

[everyone should have come to this session. i don’t care if you think you’re doing fine. you need persistent reminders of just how worried you really ought to be.]

Information security is not IT security. spans people processes and technology. its digital written and spoken. it’s being proactive. it’s an organizational discipline.

– best practice for information security, NIST, CSF, COBIT. can be audited and certified. Earth’s ‘best practice’ its the policies procedures and controls and training.
– it is not industry specific. it is federal, state, industry, contractual relevant.

Identify weaknesses
– vulnerability assessment annually or quarterly, penetration testing, gap assessment, awareness training, internal audit, risk assessment.

[Annie’s free public service announcement – do an internal audit today. if it looks like spam, it probably is. if it doesn’t look like what I usually email to you, i probably didn’t email it to you.]

Pugging – the newest busines faux pas

When did the word “partnership” change its meaning?

The word “partnership” used to denote 1) equal power, 2) equal give, and 3) equal take. As in, both parties learn something important or gain financial reward or feel the satisfaction of contributing to society, both parties happily give something whether knowledge or resources or finances, and both parties have equal power to say yes or no or what the what?

Nowadays, as soon as I hear “I think we could work on a partnership,” my brain automatically translates it into “I would like to sell you something” or “I would like something from you for free.” Saying partnership when you mean something else is a serious time waster. If it takes folks a couple hours of transportation, plus an hour of meetings plus calls and emails to figure out that a partnership really wasn’t the end goal, both parties have lost. Wasted their time. And in business talk, that means both parties have wasted dollars. If you want to make a sales pitch, then call it that. If you want a weeks worth of free advice, call it that. Transparency will always get you further ahead whether that means saving time, engendering respect, or getting what you actually wanted in the first place.

Perhaps we need yet another new phrase. Where market researchers have Sugging (selling under the guise of research), and Mugging (marketing under the guise of research), I’d like to propose Pugging – selling under the guise of partnerships.

The Market Research Holy Grail Needs No Standards

Appeared first in RW Connect

With nearly 50 speakers taking the floor to discuss mobile research, every single attendee at today’s Market Research in the Mobile World conference was sure to leave with at least one new idea or a rethink of an old idea.

Mobile research has been around for at least 15 years even though only the last few years have actually presented us with the capabilities that researchers have been dreaming of for the last 40 years. Mobile research used to mean slapping a telephone or online survey onto a mobile phone regardless of whether the survey suited the phone. Long grids, long questions, long surveys and more made users and responders dread the mobile survey. Now, thanks to massive advances in smartphones, mobile research means not just the stand-by text surveys, but also photos of in-store shopping, videos of trying on jeans that don’t fit well, gps tracking as people drive convoluted routes from store to store to store to avoid left turns and tricky roads. And of course, don’t forget about research games that people can play on their phones while they wait for the bus, games that might never be played if they were sitting at the office. This is the new mobile. Well, not new, but this is the now doable mobile research.

esomar logoGiven my background on standards committees for CASRO, ESOMAR, MRA, and MRIA, I was extremely eager to listen to the panel on mobile research standards. What better opportunity than a conference whose entire focus is mobile research. Sadly, I left disappointed. After 45 minutes into the 60 minute session, I realized that the panel hadn’t really discussed standards other than to say that standards stifle innovation. Ouch. Even when the question was directly posed to the panel “Does this mean you can’t and won’t create mobile research standards,” the answer we got was no. While one panel member was quick to say that standards are important and used (Thank you @KristinLuck), that attitude just didn’t permeate across the entire panel.

I wholeheartedly believe that there must be mobile research standards. We must have standards for people whose attitude is “If it’s not illegal, it’s fair game.” We must have standards for people who are new to the game and don’t truly understand the strengths and weaknesses of the methodology. We must have standards for users to fairly compare competitors.

So I offer this challenge to my mobile research colleagues. Open up your research filing cabinet. Pull out your research on research results. Use the lessons you learned in Kindergarten and share those results with your mobile colleagues. Develop mobile research standards. And keep on innovating the way we know you will.

Establishing Global Social Media Research Benchmarks: Through the eyes of the Twitterverse #MRMW #MRX

Nicholas McCracken – Ford,  Tricia Benn – Rogers Publishing Limited, George Rassias – Ontario Lottery & Gaming, David Johnson – Decooda, Annie Pettit – Conversition, Malcolm De Leo – Netbase, Michael Wolf – BBDO, Tom H.C. Anderson – Anderson Analytics (OdinText)

Is there a need for social media research standards? Is it possible to build standards? I could tell you the kinds of questions and answers that came up during this panel but why not let the audience speak on my behalf. What follows is a very small (non-random) selection of tweets from the audience as they listened to the panel. I’d absolutely love to hear your thoughts as well.



Let’s co-create diapers and research standards #MRMW #MRX

Welcome to this series of live blogs from the Market Research in the Mobile World Conference in Cincinnati. With so many sessions, I’m only blogging about a few sessions each day. All posts appear within minutes after the speaker has finished. Any errors, omissions, or silly side comments are my own.  I’ll also be providing end of day summary blog posts for Esomar so keep your eyes peeled for those as well.

Steve August, Revelation; Andrew Sauer, P&G: Small leaps, Big purchase moments – Using digital qual to understand key moments in product transitions

  • Some products have predictable transitions, cars need oil every few thousand miles, it’s an opportunity to revisit a decsion
  • Transitions don’t happen, they unfold over time
  • Traditional qual is 99% researcher free. Now we CAN be there
  • Think about diapers, changing sizes numerous times, it’s an opportunity to change brands. How do you target that sample?
  • Did 3 months observational research but didn’t say it had anything to do with diapers. Researchers only mentioned diapers when the moms talked about it first.
  • Moms shows pictures of old diaper vs new diaper – they wanted half sizes. People were switching brands because different brands fit better at different times

Panel of MRIA, MMRA, AMA, QRCA, MSPA, MRA, ESOMAR, ARF: Role of Trade Orgs during disruptive industry change

  • MR industry is growing but the number of people claiming to be MR is decreasing
  • Organizations are shifting from who to what is the content
  • Charge is making sure membership is up to date on what is going on
  • Help industry to be successful, enhance the reputation, back us when it comes to legislation.
  • Organizations help to create standards and ethics
  • Some include members beyond the MR industry e.g., technology providers
  • Self regulation is the answer – here are questions for you to ask your suppliers, don’t have to be prescriptive
  • We can be seen as a public good if we do a good job
  • Now the lines of marketing and marketing research are blurring – how does industry handle this
  • We offer people the opportunity to share their opinions and know they will be used carefully and privately
  • Regulations and standards and best practices are all different
  • Who will set standards, what needs standards but you ALWAYS need best practices. This is where trade associations play
  • Are these organizations relevant to clients? For OLG, it’s a big deal because the nature of their business is they are always on a fine line.
  • Industry orgs help us when congress/legislation acts in haste
  • [This panel was far too short for me]
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