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Electronic Identity System - Less Fraud, More Trust

featured / government / data security

In the aftermath of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) data breach, there has been quite a bit of discussion of the need for better authentication for people accessing the Internet. Interestingly, and perhaps not coincidentally, there have also been several articles recently on e-government in Estonia. Not coincidentally because Estonia's e-government system can address some of the issues America now faces.

Estonia loves to tout its digital society story. Estonia's path to being an e-government leader came in part out of necessity -the Internet proved to be the most cost-effective and efficient solutions for providing services. The Estonian system is decentralized - like the US - but new e-government solutions are built on a common platform that can be used... more


When Does "Healthy" Mean Healthy? Misleading Advertising and Consumer MisPerceptions

featured / behavioral research / health research / advertising research

Walking through the grocery store, you're bound to come across dozens of claims displayed in large bright letters on product packaging: "Natural," "Low-Fat," "Low-Sodium." These words are often harmless—a fat-free yogurt describing itself, or a jar of peanut butter promoting its ingredients.

But product packaging labels can also be misleading. Occasionally, a product will have a claim that is outright incorrect or inaccurate. More frequently, though, misleading product labeling uses language that implies a benefit of the product that does not exist or an exclusive feature that is actually shared by other brands. For instance, a food item billed as having "No Trans Fat!" might cause some consumers to believe that other brands of that same food do contain trans fat, which may not... more


So You Have to Moderate a Focus Group - Five Things to Know Before Your First Group

qualitative / focus group / featured / blog

When a good moderator leads a focus group, it can look effortless. However, building rapport with respondents, managing the flow of the discussion, and probing respondents to get beyond surface-level responses are skills that require both training and experience. That’s why we recommend, whenever possible, having a professional moderator conduct your focus groups. But projects don’t always go according to plan, and you may end up in a situation where you have to moderate, whether you’re ready or not. If you’ve been thrown into the moderating deep end, focusing on these five key things can help your groups go smoothly.

  1. Be as familiar as possible with the materials and the research goals.
    When you’re in the room with your participants, you... more

Fors Marsh Group Recognized in AMA Gold Top 50 Report

featured / market research / news / blog

ARLINGTON, VA – June 24, 2014 – The American Marketing Association (AMA), named Fors Marsh Group LLC (FMG), a DC-area research and consulting firm, as a top 50 market research firm in its 2015 AMA Gold Top 50 Report, formerly the Honomichl Top 50 Report. This is the first time Fors Marsh Group debuts on the list, ranking at #50 overall for revenue out of the 192 U.S.-based, for-profit market research companies considered for the report.

AMA Gold

“Like many in the marketing research industry, we look forward to reading the Top 50 report each year,” said Dr. Sean Marsh, Partner and CEO of FMG. “We expect to see the biggest names... more


Get Active! The Power of WOOP

featured / behavioral research / health research / fmg culture

A few months ago, FMG launched their first ever Get Active! Challenge. For several weeks, employees worked in teams to log their daily "steps" and compete for some great prizes. This sparked a little friendly competitiveness between colleagues, prompted some clever team names, and most importantly, got us up and moving.

Being a new employee at the time, I was a little timid about sharing my less-than-ideal workout habits with my coworkers. So I chickened out and decided to watch from the sidelines. However, I knew that even if I wasn't ready to put my exercise habits in the limelight at work, I needed to work on them at home. To help me in my quest, and because I am a huge nerd, I turned... more


The Role of Political Geography for Meaningful Data Visualization

featured / economics / data visualization / conferences


I recently attended the inaugural edition of the Harvard Meeting on Political Geography sponsored by the Harvard Institute for Quantitative Social Science. The goal of the meeting was to gather leading scholars in the field and allow them to share their cutting-edge research with one another. Presenters included political scientists and practitioners, and the topics varied from voting in South Africa to the role of infrastructure on democratic representation. The papers can all be found here. The keynote speaker was geographer Kirk Goldsberry. He discussed the concepts of thinking spatially and made an argument that maps are themselves an analytical tool. He also emphasized the idea that although maps have been around for centuries,... more