Reflecting on HRW’s Innovation Day: A balanced exploration of the potential application of nine innovations in the market research space

On May 19th we were delighted to host HRW’s Innovation Day 2020: an afternoon of short webinars guiding you through a wide variety of recent innovations, technologies, and methodologies that have been evaluated or piloted by HRW in self-funded studies. Here, Innovation Team member Francesca Cooper (Research Executive) reflects on some highlights from the day.

If you are interested in accessing the recordings of our webinars, please get in touch (info@hrwhealthcare.com) to request the password to view each link below!

With the first half of 2020 leaving us all feeling a little uncertain of the future, in May we took the opportunity to reflect on our recent past. We created and hosted a programme of nine webinars, discussing some of the innovative self-funded studies we have been working on over the last few years.

Since joining HRW, I’ve always been aware of (and involved in) our passionate pursuit of new approaches and methodologies – so much so, that I’d probably started to take it for granted. However, hearing an entire afternoon of my colleagues discussing the successes and pitfalls through their experiences with a vast variety of innovations was a sure-fire way to re-ignite my excitement.

Despite the huge variety of topics discussed, a consistent theme was balance: this wasn’t a simple “sales pitch” for the wide array of innovative tools and technologies at our disposal, but rather a critical look at the merits and limits of each innovation, brought to us by a bunch of passionate experts chatting through topics that interest them.

A short summary of each webinar can be found below, click on the links if you’d like to hear the recording- and, as noted above, drop us a line to receive the access password:


  • Jess Woodhead (Associate Director) kick-started the day by discussing the impact of stimulus on an interview, showing how more advanced technologies such as virtual reality can improve respondent engagement and imagination (Click here to listen)
  • Nicola Vyas (Research Director) drew upon her strong quant expertise to demonstrate how fast association tests enable us to minimise respondent over-rationalisation and access true responses through quick decision making. (Click here to listen)
  • Jaz Gill (Associate Director) analysed the application of experimental economics in market research methodologies through comparing data from traditional approaches versus using prediction markets (Click here to listen)
  • Nicola Vyas (Research Director) and Katy Irving (Global Head of Behavioural Science) were up next, speaking to their experiences of using neurometric technologies (such as Galvanic Skin Response, EEG and fMRI) to measure physiological reactions during interviews (Click here to listen)
  • Catherine Haw (Research Director) discussed a very challenging subject in the healthcare industry – patient adherence, and walked us through the potential and limitations of using product sensors and scales to uncover true adherence (Click here to listen)
  • Kirsty Page (Associate Director) and Nicole Shalette (Vice President) assessed their experiences of using eye-tracking and facial coding technologies to access non-verbal cues and subconscious reactions to various communication materials (Click here to listen)
  • Esme Barrow-Williams (Director) walked us through how wearable technology can help us uncover patient reality through various case studies using tech such as wearable digital diaries, smart watches, lifelogging cameras or google-glass which provide in the moment insights (Click here to listen)
  • Emily Glass (Research Manager) showed how her experiences using media tracking and adapted ethnography allows us to better understand how patients interact with online resources as well as exploring the use of health apps to investigate their ability to enable behavioural change (Click here to listen)
  • Sarah Smith (Head of Nova) and Tom Bowling (Associate Director) head up Nova (the innovation department of our sister company, MMR) and closed the day by demonstrating their learnings from using voice open ends in quant surveys as well as chatbots to gain a deeper depth of insight from respondents. (Click here to listen)

We are delighted by the positive reception and mirrored excitement which we’ve seen from both our clients and suppliers since our Innovation Day, and will be planning another in the future to talk through our even more recent innovative experiences.

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