Home » better results

Tag: better results

MaD Award Winners Session

Another record-breaking year; another record-breaking challenge for the jury. For the third edition of our Making a Difference Award Competition we have received a high number of quality entries, up 13 per cent on last year’s total. The jury had a very difficult job and found it challenging to select the winning case studies, as all of the projects were of incredibly high quality.

We aligned the best case stories – the Award Winners – with the UN SDG’s (Sustainable Development Goals) so that we can see the effect on progress with the goals in multiple areas. The 3 winning authors and their NGO counterparts took the virtual stage at the ESOMAR Insights Festival on three consecutive days. Their sessions were brilliant, strong and inspiring examples of research ‘Making a Difference’ and as a result were extremely well received by the audience. We’ll tell you what you’ve missed!

The first session featured the winners of SDG #3 – Good Heath and Well-Being: Çigdem Penn [Xsights], Elif Elkin [Abdi Ibrahim Otsuka Ilaç] and Haldun Soygur, MD, PhD [Federation of Schizophrenia Associations] with the brilliant case-study “Public Perceptions of Schizophrenia“. The study demonstrated the need for creating a difference to stop the stigmatisation of mental health patients, a corporate social responsibility perspective – through the collaboration of a pharmaceutical company an Non Governmental Organisation and a Research Company.

Prof Haldun Soygur from the Federation of Schizophrenia Associations

For the second session had covered the following paper ‘Providing earning capability and opportunity to rural women’, by Indu Upadhay, of Ipsos India and Sheela Iyer from Light of Life Trust India. They are the winners of Making a Difference – Gender Equality (SDG #5). The study touched the lives of typical rural Indian women, it aimed to understand the social norms, practices and relations and reveal the reasons that prevents them from achieving economic advancement. It identified ways in which the leading local NGO – The Light of Life Trust (LOLT) can address these barriers and increase women’s enrolment in its program as well as successful transition to employment. We certainly believe the project made a difference since it helped women fulfil their foremost aspiration of achieving greater financial security! Not only did Indu and Sheela put together an extraordinary case-study but an amazing presentation as well. 

Snapshot from their amazing presentation

The last day of the Insights Festival was for the winners of Making a Difference – Quality Education (SDG #4). Mariam Ghabrial from Marketeers Research and Johnathan Crickx from UNICEF Egypt delivered an exceptional presentation titled “How market research created words and changed worlds”. This is a story of how effective market research contributed in making a groundbreaking difference, changing laws and altering perceptions. The audience was shocked to hear that before the campaign there wasn’t even a word for bullying in Egyptian Arabic. A diligent mission that would have never been possible without UNICEF as well as national and creative partners. 

Aya is one of the faces of so many young people that decided to publicly take a stance against bullying

In summary, an excellent, thought-provoking and inspiring session which demonstrated the real value that research can bring to the Not-for-Profit sector in all areas of life. The winning case-studies and and the rest of the commended entries will be featured on this space in the coming months, so keep an eye out!

Research for Charities Seminar

As ESOMAR Foundation we organised a special session for NGO’s to attend Congress on Tuesday, Sept 10th – first of all to listen to the Congress Social research session – The Public Superheroes – then participate in a workshop, followed by the Making a Difference presentations and Awards.

So – a great opportunity for Charities to see 7 great case studies on how research is used in the not-for-profit sector, and to discuss their specific research ‘issues’ with us. The ones who accepted our invitation were a mix of local and international representatives from local and international charities and organisations.

The purpose of the workshop was two-fold, firstly to understand the research issues of NGOs’ and secondly to work out how we, as ESOMAR Foundation, could help. And, as always the results were unexpected and fascinating! First of all, we learned that their main issue is communication – though there are some research gaps that we could definitely help them to change the culture quickly.

We learned how difficult it is to change culture quickly – even armed with great research. How it works better to start with examples that people can identify with – rather than trying to stretch them too far. So if you want to change traditional attitudes to girl’s opportunities (education/marriage etc) sometimes it works to start with more general stories about children’s aspirations including boys. A great example was a story about a boy whose father was a wrestler and wanted the boy to follow in his steps – but the boy wanted to be a ballet dancer. Drawing parallels between the skills required for both jobs (agility, strength, balance, etc.) made people think and resonated better than a story about a girl who wanted to be a lawyer.

Or changing the emphasis of Family Planning communications onto men rather than women – the benefits to them – spend more time with your children when they need you, have more resources for each child, it’s better for your wife not to have a baby every year, etc. – works better than communicating to women.

Or if you want to restore a beautiful garden/park – rather than emphasising sentimental memories of time spent there as children – get people to think about how they would feel if it became a multi-story car-park.

So lesson number one – if you want breakthrough – it sometimes works to be shocking – turn something on its head – do the opposite of the expected.

If you are trying to maintain interest over the long term – for example, those affected by the Rwandan genocide are still affected decades later – particularly with mental health issues – perhaps you can tap into current trends in the UK.

We also discussed and shared with delegates –  the work that System 1 has done which shows that Charity Advertised is mostly ineffective – because donors/NGO workers demand messages when what is required is emotion.

From the side of research issues – particularly in developing markets there is a shortage of research capacity – by training individuals as quant and particularly qual interviewers we can benefit NGOs’ and the also give skills to individuals to develop their work and career opportunities. In particular, those who have experienced the problem (homelessness, domestic violence, mental health problems, etc) are frequently the best people to interview/mentor those suffering currently. So we think we will develop a peer-research training system/qualification. It could be of benefit to so many people everywhere. (After all, I believe that everyone should have research skills!)

We had an excellent discussion – everyone learned a lot – and were further inspired by the Making a Difference award-winning presentations.

Author: Phyllis Macfarlane, ESOMAR Foundation Founding Board Member