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BIG Awards

mrsAwards-2013The MRS/BIG Business Research Award is designed to recognise thought leadership and oustanding research specifically among the B2B research community, and more generally to promote the professionalism and specialism of B2B practitioners to the wider market research world. 


Papers are drawn from BIG and MRS Conference papers, Forum presentations, direct submissions and other sources (for example, IJMR and other publications) - the qualifying criteria is that the subject matter has to be about B2B research or research thinking.


Here you will find more information about entering the award, and about the finalists and winners of the award in past years.

In the year that MRS are celebrating 70 years of existence, the MRS Awards held in London 8th December 2016 was a fantastic celebration of our industry’s ability to innovate, inspire change and deliver results. Over 800 people gathered at the Supernova in Embankment Gardens to recognise the immense talent our sector has with over 20 worthy winners including Best Agency (under/over £20 million), Best Innovation, the Applications of Research and Greatest Impact to name but a few of the Awards, and of course our own MRS/BIG Award for Business-to-Business Research.  

This award is highly coveted in the business-to-business world and is given for demonstrating research quality and vision and its effectiveness and application in the business-to-business sector. There was a shortlist of 3 entrants from an original list of 8 submissions: BSI & Circle Research, Hall & Partners & HSBC and Lightspeed and Kantar TNS. All three entries were of the highest quality and made judging extremely difficult but the eventual winners were Lightspeed and Kantar TNS with their paper “Business Minds: We turned our B2B surveys into magazines and now business people look forward to completing them.” As one the judges commented “A superb paper addressing a number of the most important issues relating to B2B research at the current time including response rates and gamification”.  

This paper built on their work first started in 2015, for which the team won the same Award last year, which adopted a more creative and human-centric approach to survey design that proved to be an effective means of engaging a business audience.  The 2016 paper has taken this work further and outlines how this approach provides a way to encourage richer dialogue with participants. In particular, it provides guidance on how to tackle the key challenges of survey exhaustion, falling response rates, and disengaged respondents. So very topical and pertinent issues for us to consider.

At this years’ BIG table we were very fortunate to be joined by Jon Puleston, Rosie McMurray and Adam Scriven from Lightspeed, plus Richard Gush of Hall & Partners and Pamela Ferguson from HSBC. Circle Research had taken their own table and were worthy winners of the Best Agency with a turnover under £20m and their colleague Graeme Cade won Newcomer of the Year. Likewise Kantar TNS took at least two tables and had much to celebrate winning a further 3 awards on the night. Our congratulations to them all and to Richard Gush for being part of the winning Hall & Partners team for Best Agency with a turnover over £20m. A night of celebrations indeed!

We hope to have at least one of the final three entrants to the MRS/BIG Business-to-business Award participate in the 2017-18 BIG Forum programme next year so watch this space for more news!

The MRS/B2B Research Award is designed to recognise thought leadership & outstanding research within the B2B research community.  Our finalists this year all demonstrate research quality & vision and its effectiveness & application in the B2B sector.  They are:

Dr. Nick Coates, Creative Consultancy Director, C Space & Anna King, SME Customer and E-trading Propositions Business Manager, Aviva

Gamechanger: using co-creation to drive SME innovation and culture change at Aviva


Alex Johnston, Jigsaw Research UK & Julie Knox, Jigsaw Research USA

Social Media Research & B2B Audiences


Samantha Bond, Nichola Kent-Lemon & Jack Miles, Northstar Research Partners and DHL

Driving DHL to New Heights in Customer Service Excellence: Tackling the Taboo of Customer Complaints


Amy Cashman, TNS UK & Jon Puleston, Lightspeed GMI

 It’s not business, it’s personal – the power of personal engagement


Many congratulations to our finalists, all of whom demonstrate that innovation is alive and kicking in the B2B sector!

The winner will be announced at the MRS Awards 2015 on Monday 7 December 2015.


And the winner is…


And so, as 2013 came to an end, the market research industry gathered in their finery for the annual MRS Awards evening. Anyone who is anyone was at the Park Plaza Hotel in Westminster for the annual pre-Christmas market research Oscars.

The BIG MRS award winners were announced at the dinner last night.  A truely international effort this year, with representatives from both sides of the Atlantic.


Many congratulations to the winners - Northstar - and commiserations to the runners up.



"Using Research to Create a Shadow of Positivity: Rebuilding the Reputation of an American Giant"

Jack Miles, Matthew Sell and Peter Zoutis, Northstar Research Partners



"Transforming Business"

Jerry Power, Allison Cerra and Kevin Easterwood, Alcatel-Lucent



"Data in your hand. Using mobile internally"

Richard Owen, Founder & CEO, CrowdLab and Anna Tozer, Senior Insights Manager, EE



The MRS Awards celebrate research’s ability to drive innovation, inspire change and deliver results. Evidence matters and the MRS Awards are proof positive of the power of research.


BIG sponsors an award specifically for B2B research.

Luke Perry and Alex Johnston from Jigsaw Research won the BIG award for the best B2B paper of  2012 at the MRS Awards dinner on Monday 10 December.


It was a very strong field this year and the judges were extremely impressed by the quality of the papers. 


These comments sum up why the finalists were selected

The quality of entrants for 2011 was so strong that four finalists were announced - the committee simply could not choose between them.


The four finalists are:


  • The B2B research market, past, present and future (Trevor Wilkinson, Purple Market Research)
  • City Assets:  Benchmarking with influentials (Oliver Rowe, YouGovStone)
  • Customer Loyalty:  From satisfaction to committment and competitive advantage (Debbie Senior, Harris Interactive and Llinos Honathon, Invensys Controls)
  • Culture Mapping:  A framework for understanding international B2B decision-making (Jonathon Fletcher, Illuminas)


Read more about the papers, and find out who won here...

2010 saw a very high number of entrants and was a closely fought competition. 


The three shortlisted papers were:


  • B2B Sans Frontiers - The Business Environment in Post-Conflict Iraq (Allan Hyde, The Opinion Research Business)
  • Never mind the quality, feel the width - Developing tools for qualitative research (Neil McPhee, Nuance Research)
  • The Royal Mail Opinion Forum:  A dynamic approch to researching corporate and SME customers (Simon Shaw, Brass and Rosy Goodrick, Royal Mail)


Find out who won here...


Three papers, drawn from a variety of sources, were shortlisted for this year's award:


  • B2B goes digital: New ways for marketing insight (Neil Swan, formerly RS Consulting group)

  • Harnessing Social Brainstorming for Business Decisions (Catherine Shovlin, Synthetron BV)

  • Small Business Lions' Lair:  A collaborative and Challenging way to Drive Business Improvement and Turn Insight into Action (Nick Bassett, Votafone UK and Matt Burn/ Carrie Lawrence, ICM Research)


Read more about the papers here...

This year, the shortlist includes:


  • The Business of Business Communities, Nia Emlyn-Jones (formerly of FreshMinds)
  • Royal Mail Joint Expectations Management Model, Laura Godfrey & Claire Rainey (Synovate & Royal Mail Group)
  • SME Immersion 2007, James Burckhardt & Nick Bassett (ICM & Vodafone Enterprise Business Unit)


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