Take Your Research Skills on an Adventure

  • 10 Jun 2019
  • 4:30 PM
  • The Thistle Inn (George room), 3 Mulgrave Street, Pipitea, Wellington 6011

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How a Corporate Research Guy Made a Difference In East Timor

This is a talk for any researcher who wants a change and would like to ‘give back’, but doesn’t want to give up market research. Perhaps someone who’d love a gap year, or is facing retirement and wondering ‘what next’, or maybe just those of us who’d like to see our skills really making a difference.

In 2015 Alastair Gordon, a ‘research veteran’ of many years, had just completed a huge project helping a big multi-national revamp all their market research training materials. But this left him unsatisfied – he found himself tired, utterly bored and completely sick of all things ‘researchy’. So to the surprise of many, and himself, he took a two year assignment with Volunteer Service Abroad helping SME businesses in Timor-Leste (East Timor).

In this talk Alastair will describe some of the fun and frustration of being a marketer and researcher in one of the world’s newest, poorest and smallest nations. More importantly, maybe, Alastair will talk about how the research skills we take for granted can actually be hugely helpful in helping build capacity in developing countries, and how the act of volunteering turned out not only to be immensely life-enhancing, but also helped rebuild his belief in the value of research.

The talk will consist of pictures and discussion – no bullet point slides!

(NOTE: Bar tab and nibbles provided!)


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