The Association for Qualitative Research
The Hub of Qualitative Thinking

What do you think of AQR?

The results from January's membership questionnaire are in and being analysed as this issue goes to press, but we thought we'd give you a taste of the initial findings which are starting to filter through.

For a start, AQR compares favourably with the other organisations that members tend to belong to, such as the MRS, ESOMAR and BMRA. This is because, say respondents, it is 'qual specific, friendly, personal, professional and has an excellent administration'. No surprise, then, that Committee secretary Rose Molloy is rated by respondents as one of the AQR's most valuable assets!

Membership has stayed fairly constant for the past year or so, at around 1,200, and one of the purposes of the questionnaire was to find out how AQR was perceived and whether it should do more to attract new members. The answer to the former, so far, is that the majority think that their view of the Association changes for the better after joining. As for the latter, we wait to hear your verdict.

Adjectives used to describe AQR are, in the main, positive. It is seen as 'enthusiastic', 'friendly', 'professional', 'approachable', 'responsive' and 'supportive' ­ but there is a down side, too. There are those who still view it as 'cliquey', despite attempts to dispel this illusion.

The good news, though, is that in an era of ever-rising costs AQR is seen as delivering value for money ­ both in terms of subscriptions, and its products and services.

The membership is equally clear as to AQR's remit. Top of the list is the need for the Association to facilitate and encourage dialogue, debate and new thinking, and second that it should provide opportunities for training and education.

These topline findings come from the 110 questionnaires that have been received to date. By the next issue, a complete analysis will have been completed and the results fed through to the Marketing Committee.

 

Louella Miles
Copyright © Association for Qualitative Research, 2001