As the year is coming to a close, and as I take stock of projects I’ve worked on and proposals that we should have won, this is a question that I’m increasingly thinking about, and am seeking a perspective on.

This is certainly not a new subject, and as an industry, we have peers who have already proven themselves to be ‘innovative’, at least according to the survey results of this particular report from Green Book (GRIT 2017).

I’m not here to dispute the findings or question the rankings, but as an experienced qualitative researcher, it is second nature to me to want to understand the meaning of such labels as ‘innovative’ and to contextualize it within the specific region that I work in

The greater importance cannot be stressed enough: as an organization, Kadence seeks to raise the status of market research within the region, by delivering insights that inspire and impact businesses. With that as the key focus, 

it is then important to ask whether ‘Innovation’, however it is defined, is truly necessary in the first place.

In the spirit of ‘knowing what you know, and not knowing what you don’t’, it is thus time to fully explore the question, so we can consider how it then fits into the overall narrative of ‘insights that inspire and impact’, rather than for its own sake

To be precise, these are the questions that I’m seeking to answer, in order to truly make sense of the subject:

  1. Can we apply conventional definitions of ‘innovation’ (e.g. disruption, novel/new, creativity, etc.) common to other industries to our own, given that its narrative may/may not be directly applicable?
  2. Even if we can define ‘innovative research’, how does it need to be implemented?
  3. What kinds of ‘research innovation’ does Asia need that is the most relevant and pertinent to how the region is developing?
  4. Ultimately, who benefits more from ‘innovative research’, clients or agencies, and why?

This will be the first of a series of articles on the topic, as I explore its multifaceted nature. I’m hoping that through interacting with my colleagues, peers and clients, I’ll be that much closer to an answer.

Stay tuned for the next article, as I share my immediate findings on the explorations.