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March 1, 2019: The ISO/TC 225 Market, Opinion, and Social Research committee is pleased to announce that ISO 20252:2019 Market, opinion and social research, including insights and data analytics — Vocabulary and service requirements has been published by ISO. This comprehensive revision aims to help researchers and research buyers support and encourage higher and more consistent levels of quality in the provision of market, opinion, and social research services including insights and data analytics.

Given the speed that technology continues to evolve research practice, the updates to this standard will ensure that it remains relevant today and in the future. This standard incorporates and supplants ISO 26362:2009 – Access panels in market, opinion and social research — Vocabulary and service requirements. It also incorporates the requirements of ISO 19731:2017 Digital analytics and web analyses for purposes of market, opinion and social research — Vocabulary and service requirements which will continue to remain available as a separate standard.

Market, opinion, and social research is a global sector with people marketing and developing products, services, and policies in multiple cities, regions, and countries, and adapting their strategies to the unique economic and cultural factors existing in each region. This standard will help to ensure that no matter where research is conducted, it will meet the same risk management standards of quality.

Further, when seeking professional help to conduct research, this standard constitutes a uniform benchmark by which to judge the robustness of processes and procedures in the delivery of research, insight, and data services. Consumers and citizens benefit indirectly from high quality research as manufacturers and service providers can produce better products and services, and policy makers make better decisions.

The new standard sets out guidance and requirements relating to the ways in which research studies are planned, commissioned, executed, supervised, and reported to clients and provides a framework for:

  • clients to receive guidance regarding what to ask for,
  • research providers to know what is expected from them,
  • countries that do not have national standards,
  • improving research quality and the profession,
  • strengthening the research supply-chain via the sub-contracting provisions, and
  • emphasizing the importance and value of research, insight and data in business and society.

Don Ambrose, Chair of the ISO technical committee that updated the standard, explains, “ISO 20252 is a must-have for the research sector. Users the world over – companies, governments, research institutes, consumer associations, educational facilities, and marketing, advertising, and insights agencies – will benefit by having global compatibility, traceability and continual improvement. In addition, it will enable clients to obtain globally compatible, comparable and homogeneous feedback and make better-informed choices of service providers.”

Currently, more than 315 research agencies are 3rd party certified to ISO 20252, and more than 50 research agencies are certified to the companion standard ISO 26362.

Please visit the formal ISO 20252 website for more information:

The ISO has also prepared a separate press release available here:


ISO 20252:2019 covers all the stages of a research study: from the initial contact between the client and service provider, to presentations of results to the client. This third edition has been updated to reflect new or modified research practices and new content has been added, including the complete ISO 26362:2009, covering the management and use of access panels. It was developed by technical committee ISO/TC 225, Market, opinion and social research, whose secretariat is held by UNE, ISO’s member for Spain. It can be purchased from your national ISO member or through the ISO Store,