Edward Appleton

Last week I was working on a web-usability research project. Looking at the pros and cons of the various methodological approaches, I was struck, shocked even, by the cost differences between DIY, unmoderated software driven solutions and the consultative lab-based approaches.
How many newer entrants into market research know, I wonder, what "planners" do in ad. agencies? I've spent almost a decade of my professional career in planning, leading the Planning Unit at Grey Europe, and then jointly spear-heading it at Young and Rubicam in Germany.
Market Research is going through exciting times - mobile, communities, biometrics are just some of the new ways technology is helping us get closer, and for longer, to the audiences we wish to understand.
I attended the Warc 2014 Next Generation Market Research Conference in London last week - as a Keynote speaker, no less.
At the recent ESOMAR Qualitative Conference in Valencia, Spain, one of the papers that stuck in my mind was on the topic of "online" versus "offline" identity.
A recent article in Research Live highlighted the re-branding of WPP's Insights Division from "Consumer Insights Division" to "Data Investment Management".
I've long been a fan of Qualitative Research - Groups, Depths, ECGs, ethnographies.... - both as a Client and Agency Side provider.
In the June 2013 issue of Harvard Business Manager (German edition) there is an article by Prof. Thorsten Henning-Thurau of Münster University entitled "Crisis of Marketing".
I have just finished Week 4 of the Ariely/ Duke University online course on Behavioural Economics ( http://bit.ly/134WRDq ) The last 6 days have been all about " Labour & Motivation" - particularly relevant for those of us in gainful employment.  It was extremly interesting, if pretty hard work - maybe I'm just feeling the pain a little after four weeks of evening and weekend study; or perhaps the topic was chosen deliberately to test our desire and will mid-way through.
I've recently completed the 2nd Week of my online course on Behavioural Economics given by the renowned Dan Ariely.
I'm currently taking an online educational course in Behavioural Economics (BE), lead by the eminent Dan Ariely, author of Predictably Irrational and teaching Professor of Duke University ( http://danariely.com/ ) It's a fabulously well done course - lasting 6 weeks, it consists of Video tutorials, Reading Assignments, and tests that lead to a possible certification.
Two things caught my attention over the past few weeks in the world of Market Research. Firstly: the UK MRS Annual Event for 2013, "Shock of the New" ( http://bit.ly/VET7Pj ).
I recently read an excellent article in the January 2013 issue of Research Live on the role social influence has on our preferences.
Anyone who follows rugby will be aware of the transformation that the English national team has undergone since the new coach, Stuart Lancaster, was appointed roughly 12 months ago.  After years of turgid displays, disappointments, defeats and false dawns, with new Coaches being appointed and sacked without achieving much, it seems like the the team that won the World Cup back in 2004 has finally rediscovered its form.