Guard against skewed surveys

Surveys need to be designed by experts in order to provide credible and robust research, says the CIPR


Surveys and statistics can build powerful stories, but research results should reveal the true response, not necessarily a truth that serves the purpose of the client or campaign.

Survey questions need to be phrased and ordered in a balanced way to ensure that they are not ‘leading’. It actually takes considerable statistical expertise to design questionnaires. Be aware of the limitations of your professional competence, get proper advice and only acc­ept or delegate work for which you are suitably skilled and experienced.

All messages, statistics and claims made in communications should be supported by proof and a robust and reasonable rationale for the claim. Ideally, work with research professionals who are signed up to the Market Research Society Code of Conduct.

Professionals realise that the use of research, surveys and statistics is a matter of integrity.

Check the CIPR Code of Conduct before you act, at

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