Landmark Revision to MRA Code of Marketing Research Standings Approved

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The Marketing Research Association’s Board of Directors today approved a landmark revision to the MRA Code of Marketing Research Standards.

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The Code’s principles are designed to promote an ethical culture in which honesty, professionalism, fairness and confidentiality combine to support marketing research’s success.

The Marketing Research Association’s Board of Directors today approved a landmark revision to the MRA Code of Marketing Research Standards.

The new Code establishes 42 ethical and best practice principles to guide marketing research practitioners day-to-day. Per the association’s Bylaws, MRA’s members are obligated to adhere to these principles. To maximize the global acceptance of marketing research, non-members are encouraged to do so as well.

“The Code’s principles are designed to promote an ethical culture in which honesty, professionalism, fairness and confidentiality combine to support marketing research’s success,” said MRA Board Chairman Jill Donahue, a corporate researcher with Nestle Purina PetCare. “The standards any profession adopts can help define its value and, ultimately, its acceptance,” she said, “The new Code sets an appropriately high bar for an evolving and progressive industry.”

“The new Code addresses the responsibilities of marketing researchers to each other, the media, government officials, the public and anyone benefiting from marketing research,” added Jay White, CEO of Baltimore Research and chairman of MRA’s Standards and Ethics Committee (SEC), which was charged with revising the prior version of the Code, last published in 2007. The SEC spent 17 months reviewing unaddressed areas, ambiguous standards, general clarity and structure before submitting its recommendation to MRA’s Board for consideration.

“MRA’s objective was especially challenging – to create a set of principles that serve the entire profession, rather than segmented principles pertaining only to specialized modes or methodologies,” added White. “To answer that challenge, the new Code contains broad principles as well as detailed rationale. Both are necessary for a well-formed Code that is not overbearing and provides flexibility for practitioners operating with a firm ethical foundation,” he said.

“The new Code is a unique and modern set of principles and rationale based on combined revisions suggested in 2011, 2012, 2013, as well as legal, SEC and peer reviews,” said Amy Shields, MRA’s director of research and the expert responsible for stewardship of the new Code throughout its revision process. “There also is an increased emphasis on a streamlined enforcement process,” she said. “We believe that an enforced Code is of greatest value to the marketing research profession.”
The Code will be published in the December edition of MRA’s quarterly Alert! magazine. It is available online today at http://www.MarketingResearch.org/Code.

Founded in 1957 and based in Washington, DC, the Marketing Research Association (MRA) is the leading and largest association of the opinion and marketing research profession, which delivers insights and intelligence to guide the decisions of companies providing products and services to consumers and businesses.

Contact: Shane Kelley
Shane(dot)kelley(at)marketingresearch(dot)org
(202) 800-2545

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