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Government Equalities Office: Market Research

Volume 494: debated on Friday 19 June 2009

To ask the Minister for Women and Equality how much the Government Equalities Office spent on (a) opinion polling, (b) focus groups and (c) other forms of market research in each year since 2007; what surveys were commissioned; and what the purpose of each was. (279369)

Since the establishment of the Government Equalities Office (GEO) on 12 October 2007, the GEO Research and Analysis Team has conducted or commissioned a range of research on equality issues using a variety of research methods.

Based on current records, Table 1 lists research projects involving opinion survey (defined broadly here as any surveys of the public to acquire relevant information) commissioned by the Department from October 2007 and the GEO's expenditure on this research by financial year. Table 2 sets out research projects involving focus groups, commissioned by the Department and the associated total annual expenditure by financial year. Table 3 presents information on any other forms of market research commissioned by GEO and associated costs by financial year.

A number of these research projects combine a mixture of research methods, for which it is not possible to disaggregate the specific cost of surveys or focus groups. Under these circumstances, the total cost of the project has been provided, and is included in only one place in the tables (to avoid the double-counting of costs).

Table 1: Research involving opinion surveys, by financial year

Year

Research

Purpose

Total annual costs (£)

2008-09

Attitudes to prostitution

To explore public attitudes to prostitution.

125,586

Flexible working

To explore how flexible working can help carers combine paid work and caring responsibilities, and any constraints.

Women in business

To establish the reasons for and experiences of women starting their own business.

Impact of the economic downturn on women and families

To explore how the downturn has affected the concerns and experiences of women and men. Please note this research involved focus groups and opinion surveys for which the costs cannot be disaggregated.

2009-10

Perceptions of offenders' gender and sentencing ongoing research)

To establish public perceptions of offenders' gender and sentencing.

13,515

Awareness of right to request flexible working among parents

To assess awareness of the right to request flexible working among carers and parents.

Table 2: Research involving focus groups, by financial year

Year

Research

Purpose

Total annual costs (£)

2007-08

Routes to power

To explore ethnic minority women's routes into, through, and out of decision-making positions. Please note this research involved a range of methods. The cost of the focus groups cannot be disaggregated from the total project cost.

53,550

Women take part

To examine the participation of women, in particular under-represented women, in governance and decision making, in community and public life. Please note this research involved a range of methods. The cost of focus groups cannot be disaggregated from the total project cost.

2008-09

Perceptions of fair and equal treatment (ongoing research)

To examine perceptions of fair treatment

28,252

Note:

Impact of the economic downturn on women and families involved focus groups and opinion surveys. To avoid double counting, the costs for this project have been included in Table 1 not Table 2.

Table 3: Other forms of market research, by financial year

Year

Research

Purpose

Total annual costs (£)

2008-09

The use of age-based practices in financial services (ongoing research)

To explore how age-based practices are used in financial services. Please note this research involves a range of methods. The cost of the market research element cannot be disaggregated from the total project costs.

120,000