Education of market researchers

Date of publication: September 1, 1966

Author: A. B. Vos


Rapid growth in the demand for market research since 1945 has imposed severe strains on the available supply of researchers. Examination of existing academic institutions reveals that nobody is producing trained market researchers. Additionally - although the university teaching of social sciences is expanding rapidly - very few trained survey researchers are emerging^ and there are no adequate interdisciplinary social and economic research units using the survey technique on any regular basis. In terms of what we can do ourselves, within-firm training is hampered by pressure of business and the typically small unit size of commercial research companies. Market research labour demands are very small relative to the graduate labour market, so we must look for a gradual improvement in the supply of graduates with some training reasonably close to our requirements. The Business Schools are likely to yield the closest match, but their typical student is more likely to be interested in a general management career. More emphasis needs to be placed on basic courses on problem definition, data securing, analysis and interpretation as an essential adjunct of any undergraduate course in the social sciences. In addition, a limited number of post-graduate courses in survey research techniques should be made available.

A. B. Vos


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