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❶The goal is to measure the influence of all marketing inputs on sales and profits. As a result, it is often only during the research process that potential ethical issues that may be faced in the next phase of a research project become clear.

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If you are using a mixed methods research design, you will need to take into account the ethical challenges inherent in quantitative and qualitative research designs. After all, you will be using both qualitative and quantitative research methods.

To some extent, this may put a greater burden on your dissertation, slowing down the research process, especially if you need to conduct a qualitative research phase e. Whilst quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods research designs all present ethical challenges, most are easily overcome. Even when using mixed methods research designs, you should be able to recognise different ethical scenarios ; that is, different ethical issues you would face if using one research method before another, or one research method in conjunction with another.

Recognising the basic ethical principles that dissertations should adhere to is a good starting point [see the article: Principles of research ethics ].

The potential ethical issues raised by different research methods not only differ from one type of research method to the next e. To illustrate some of the different ethical issues you will face across research methods, we discuss surveys and structured interviews , observation and informal and in-depth interviews. Each of these research methods is discussed in turn:. By their very nature, surveys and structured interviews have to be designed before the research process starts.

In fact, since these two types of research method typically use closed questions where respondents must choose from pre-defined options, most of the potential answers to questions are known in advance. From an ethical perspective, this makes it easier to get informed consent from respondents because most aspects of the survey and structured interview process are fairly certain. Before you start the survey or structured interview process, you can clearly explain what you will be asking potential respondents, and even show them the entire research instrument i.

This can not only help you achieve informed consent , but also ease the mind of the research participant, minimising the potential for distress, which is an important basic principle of research ethics [see the article: Observation, whether overt or covert , faces additional ethical considerations when compared with the use of surveys and structured interviews.

Covert observation, where participants are unaware that you are conducting research, raises particular ethical issues. However, even when using overt observation, where those individuals being observed know that they are being watched, there are some specific ethical challenges that you need to overcome.

Let's look at overt and covert observation in turn:. Most research that uses observation as a research method will be overt in nature; that this, the research participants will be aware that you are observing them and should know what you are observing.

In this sense, it should be possible to obtain informed consent from those individuals that you are observing. However, this is not always the case. In some instances, access to research participants in an observational setting such as an organisation may have been granted by a gatekeeper ; an individual that has the right to grant access e. In such instances, permission may have been granted to carry out your research and participants may be aware what you are doing, but they have not necessarily given you their informed consent.

In fact, gatekeepers such as senior managers with organisations may have required employees to take part. As such, participants may not have been given the right to withdraw from your research, which is one of the basic principles of research ethics [see the article: Furthermore, even if an individual has been granted the right to withdraw from your research, you will need to think about how can manage this if you are observing a large group interaction e. Whilst we are not suggesting that you cannot continue with such observation, you would need to have thought about the ways that you can separate the data provided by this individual during the observation when analysing and reporting the data.

Covert observation can be viewed as ethically problematic because it is a form of deceptive practice. Not only are respondents not giving you informed consent , but you may also be keeping the observation covert because you feel that respondents would be otherwise unwilling to take part in your research. In a product clinic, all of the major brands are assembled in one location, and prospective buyers of those products are recruited to view, examine, and compare the different brands.

For services industries, mystery shopping is often used for benchmarking. Companies typically have reams of historical sales and marketing data that can be analyzed as part of the strategy development process. Basic sales analysis is the starting point. An analytical database can also be assembled of data related to the major marketing variables ad spending, promotion spending, pricing, sales, etc. The goal is to measure the influence of all marketing inputs on sales and profits.

Typically, marketing-mix modeling involves the use of multiple regression techniques to help explain or predict the optimal mix of marketing variables. Regression is based on a number of inputs or independent variables and how these relate to an outcome or dependent variable such as sales or profits. Once the model is built and validated, the input variables advertising, promotion, etc. With or without marketing-mix modeling, the analysis of historical sales data is almost always a part of the strategy development process.

When marketing-mix modeling is not feasible or applicable, then choice modeling becomes the recommended method of determining the optimal mix of marketing variables. Carefully controlled experiments are set up so that consumers are simply asked to choose how many of each product they would buy, given predetermined sets of realistic conditions i. Make certain to cite your references correctly by clicking here to learn more.

As you go through these steps, remember that the suggested layout is a very broad and general search strategy. The library has subject specific librarians for every catagory of major offered at BYU, and those librarians have put together pages just for you!

On these pages, you will find databases they recommend you look in, as well as reference material, websites, and various other research helps. Perhaps most important is the subject librarians' contact information. If at any time you feel like you could use a helping hand in finding specific articles or developing your topic, contact your subject librarian for advice or set up an appointment to meet with them and talk through your research.

To find topic specific databases and other resources recommended by your subject librarian, go to the subject guides! Search this Guide Search. Basic Research Strategy This guide will help you understand how to efficiently and effectively do basic research.

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Research can seem intimidating at first, and can be the most difficult part of an assignment. In each case, the process will be slightly different, but there are a few basic steps that can be applied to most topics. Research strategy and research ethics. Research ethics is not a one size fits all approach. The research strategy that you choose to guide your dissertation determines the approach that you should take towards research ethics.

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Projects or products that predominantly utilize design research and strategy. Examples include: brand strategies, product and project strategies, research methodologies such as surveys, interviews, studies, observations, varied research throughout projects, etc. Strategy Research Sound strategy is fundamental to business success. Strategy is the formula by which the major marketing variables (advertising, positioning, product, promotion, pricing, distribution, etc.) are integrated, energized, and optimized.