Qualitative Research | Ipsos MORI
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Qualitative Research and Engagement Centre

Putting peoples’ lived experiences at the heart of what we do and bringing the public voice to decision making.

Ipsos MORI’s Qualitative Research and Engagement Centre comprises experts in qualitative methods, dialogue and public engagement, specialising in bringing the public voice into policy making. 

Grounded in high-quality, inclusive and ethical processes, our work delivers the robust insights needed to make people-centred change. Our rigorous approach to research and engagement means that we are trusted to deliver complex and high-profile studies that help policy makers build public engagement and a true understanding of how policies and public services are working for citizens.

Our experience ensures that the needs and wellbeing of our participants – ranging from those who are the most vulnerable in our society to influential policymakers and thought leaders – are carefully considered, supporting them to share their experiences and views.

Designing qualitative research and engagement studies using both traditional and innovative methods, we evolve our approaches to make the most of the latest developments in technology such as Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality technologies. We are also fast to adapt to the impact of societal changes on our industry and have been at the forefront of developing online research and engagement throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whether carrying out domestic or international work we are driven by delivering insights that have impact and longevity, making a difference to our clients and ultimately, our participants.  

Find out more about our recent work in the case studies below.

  • Digital ethnography to explore the experiences of people approaching later life in lockdown: this study was carried out in collaboration with the Centre for Ageing Better. Participants completed a daily video/ written diary over three weeks, telling us about their daily life and views during lockdown. Diaries were completed using the Ipsos MORI research tool AppLife. The study shines a light on how those in and approaching later life have fared during lockdown, providing insights into the importance of this group having a stake in how we build back from the pandemic. The full report can be read here.
  • International views on trust in politicians and the government: this study was carried out on behalf of the University of Southampton. Online focus groups were conducted in eight countries: the UK, the US, Australia, Italy, Croatia, Argentina, Zimbabwe and the Philippines. Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 crisis, the groups explored how people make decisions about trust in politicians and governments. Findings have informed the TrustGov project’s latest papers on Vaccine Hesitancy and A Gendered Perspective on Meanings and Measurements of Trust, Mistrust and Distrust
  • Globalisation and National Identity: This study was carried out on behalf of the Pew Research Center. 26 focus groups were carried out across the UK and the U.S. to explore how people feel about globalisation and how this relates to views regarding their communities and country. Findings from the groups have informed understanding on the challenges to local and national identity as explored in Pew’s paper ‘In U.S. and UK, Globalisation Leaves Some Feeling ‘Left Behind’ or ‘Swept Up’.
  • Oxford Citizens Assembly on Climate Change: working in collaboration with Oxford City Council, this Citizen Assembly brought together 50 Oxford residents to learn about climate change and carefully consider different ways to cut carbon emissions. Detailed feedback and recommendations from Assembly members were reported to the Council and used to inform their future sustainability strategy. You can watch a video to find out more here, or read about the Assembly here
  • Brighton & Hove Online Climate Assembly: conducted in collaboration with Brighton & Hove City Council, 50 residents were brought together to discuss how to combat climate change focussing on transport in the city. This was the first Assembly to take place entirely online (ensuring the approach was COVID-19 secure). Residents attended five sessions during which they learned about, deliberated and generated recommendations for how the area can become carbon neutral by 2030. These recommendations are informing Brighton & Hove’s carbon neutral programme. Find out more about the Climate Assembly here.
  • Qualitative research for the Evaluation of the Troubled Families Programme: carried out on behalf of the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, this large-scale, longitudinal case-study research explored the experiences of families and staff involved in the programme between 2015 and 2020. Painting a rich picture of families’ complex lives and needs, and multi-agency service transformation, the findings of the evaluation are being used to develop future support for vulnerable families. You can read the most recent reports here.
  • Deliberative engagement with Londoners to steer the pandemic response: conducted by Ipsos MORI and Imperial College Health Partners on behalf of NHS England and Improvement (London region) this dialogue and deliberation aimed to understand Londoners’ expectations and to inform future decision-making relating to the response to the pandemic, specifically exploring the tensions and trade-offs. It culminated in the development a set of guiding statements on Londoners’ expectations. These were not binding, but rather intended to assist the NHS when making decisions about services during the next phase of the pandemic. You can read the report here.
  • OneLondon health and care data deliberation: the OneLondon Local Health and Care Record Exemplar commissioned Ipsos MORI, supported by Professor Graham Smith and The Kings Fund, to undertake a programme of deliberative engagement with Londoners. Stakeholder workshops fed into a Citizens’ Summit held over two weekends with 100 participants recruited from across London. The deliberative format facilitated a conversation to explore the acceptability of using and accessing health and care data for different purposes. Recommendations from the deliberation form a set of expectations around how health and care records are joined up which are being implemented across London and driving forward the use of depersonalised data for indirect care purposes (e.g. planning and research). Read more about the programme of deliberative engagement here
  • Understanding the behavioural impact of COVID-19 antibody testing: conducted on behalf of Imperial College, this study involved qualitative depth interviews with those who had completed a COVID-19 antibody test. The research explored participant views on antibody testing, and whether this intervention would change their health behaviours in response to wider public health measures such as social distancing. Evidence from this research is being used by Imperial College to take into account potential behavioural responses to antibody tests in their development of public health recommendations. You can read the report here.