Here, you will find information on qualitative research and a variety of suggestions to bear in mind when planning to carry out fieldwork in Spain. Most of the tips and articles are coined by us but we are very much in favour of making reference to other author's links whenever we consider they may be useful to market research practitioners.

viernes, 4 de noviembre de 2011

QRCA 2011. The day after

Congratulations to QRCA for the 2011 Annual conference!

This year the QRCA conference was in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Not surprisingly, one of our partners was very much into going to learn, connect and have fun.  As soon as he came back, we wanted to know his impressions.  What follows is what we have got from him after nine hours of jetlag:

How about the conference?
The conference program, the luxury Venetian Palazzo Hotel and Las Vegas, everything was just perfect.  As for the conference, I would say that it was a complete success. 

What did you find more remarkable?
Fist of all, I would like to thank the organizers for the great job they have done and also to the conference committee that selected the presentations because there were interesting topics to choose from at any time. 

Ok, I guess that most of the presentations have had a fairly good level…,
Yes, but the conference was not all about presentations.  There were master classes, round tables, SIG meetings and many opportunities to contact with fellow professionals consultants. 

Has there been any particular session that had a bigger impact upon you?
I don’t want to be unfair to others presenters because I haven’t been to all the sessions.  By choosing one workshop I was missing another.  Do you see what I mean? However, what impressed me most was the way in which Pat Sabena, Judy Langer and J.R. Harris explored the subject “Triggers that lead to changes in lifestyle”; they all worked on the same briefing but the master class showed their different ways to approach the issue and elicit the information while moderating.  This is the kind of thing that makes this conference unique.  Leading consultants are not afraid to share their knowledge.  Other than that, I have also enjoyed very much the session “Interpreting Ethnography for Actionable Insights”, presented by Bill Abrams and John Holcombe.

So, what would you say that is your overall impression?
I am very happy to have been present in Las Vegas.  There are many important conferences around the world but QRCA is definitely one of my favourites. 

Thanks a lot; you can have some sleep now.

viernes, 8 de julio de 2011

Improving Feedback By Using Moderator-Interpreter Dyads

Enhance the output of your simultaneous interpreting by hiring a moderator-interpreter dyad

Improving the outcome of simultaneous interpreting requires a comprehensive approach. Arguably, moderator-interpreter dyads are the synergistic alternative that focuses on the needs of practitioners to address the drawbacks of standard interpreting.

To achieve success in interpreting, it is essential that the moderator and the interpreter are acquainted with each other’s needs. Only in this manner would the interpreter be able to capture the participants’ pertinent reactions. When the interpreter is familiar with the objectives of each section of the questionnaire and understands the purpose of the qualitative exercises, it is more likely that the recipients will receive relevant information.

Moderator-interpreter dyads are one of the best ways to avoid the drawbacks of standard interpreting in focus groups. Unlike the outcome delivered by interpreters without actual understanding of the marketing project, the pairing of moderators and interpreters promotes the overall comprehension of the study so they are both working towards a common goal, which in turn encourages the ability to convey not only words but connotative information that is vital to the projects.

Dyads offer a pro-active approach whereby all the parties that have an effect upon the interpretation process work together to acknowledge: a) the market research aims for the project, b) the techniques that the moderator will apply during the focus group and c) the type of audience that will receive the information. Only when the interpreters take these aspects into consideration do they learn to differentiate the information that is significant and gain competence to intensify the flow of meaningful messages towards the viewing room.

More precisely, moderator-interpreter dyads improve the outcome of interpreting as follows:
  • Facilitating collaboration between moderator and interpreter with a view to delivering accurate messages instead of simply words
  • Ensuring the interpreters’ understanding of the marketing objectives and the adequate preparation of the qualitative exercises.
  • Reducing the impact of cultural barriers by facilitating the communication of the whole message, which includes feelings, intentions and cultural load
  • Promoting the transmission of relevant messages.
  • Allowing interpreters and moderators to tap into their common experience to approach the singularities of each project and cope with new situations.
  • Helping practitioners to analyse the information.
Thus, dyads are a synergistic solution that allows practitioners to fully grasp conversations. They provide the comprehensive kind of interpreting that is required by international clients and practitioners alike.

By Marina Gonzalez, bilingual qualitative researcher and moderator. Partner at A Window.

Choosing Interpreters

Intangible benefits of hiring translation services from a viewing facility
The moment of the truth when choosing interpreting services comes before you decide what company to work with. It is the moment when you evaluate the differences between the available services. This article comments on the advantages of hiring translation services through A Window

Sometimes the decision to pick the right interpreter may appear to be quite easy. You may have one interpreter you have already worked with or a freelancer who has been highly recommended to you. Also, you may be thinking of hiring one interpreter from a local language services agency or you may rely on the local facility that is setting up the project. You may think that it is all the same, but it is not. Let us briefly explore these options.

Perhaps the most disturbing consideration when hiring a freelancer is that we know little about what his/her speciality really is. At this stage, previous jobs will only be worthy of consideration if the subject matter of the project is similar. This is irrespective of him/her being recommended or known to you. It may be a mistake to assume that an interpreter will perform equally well in any field.

Language service agencies
They will surely have several interpreters available and can be very handy if a particular specialization is a requisite or the agency has already translated the materials for the project. Specifically, this may work quite well for face to face interviews. However, working at a market research facility is quite different from working at a conference. By way of example, we often find that some interpreters feel uncomfortable having to translate focus groups or having to interact with executives or clients behind the one way mirror, since they are not used to doing so. Thus, a background in market research assignments is arguably a non-negotiable requirement.

Viewing facilities
The services provided by viewing facilities vary greatly according to the country, the city and their client base. In Spain, they range from those that serve as a link between you and the interpreter but relinquish any responsibility for the outcome of the service to those that offer interpreting as a regular service and have available specialised teams comprising moderators and interpreters.

Any of the above may provide good services but there is a feeling amongst many practitioners that interpreting gets a plus when it is the outcome of an interpreter-moderator dyad. Our recommendation is that practitioners should carefully examine the benefits to be gained with each service available, analyse the impact that interpreting has upon their work and then judge by themselves what supplier is in a better position to give a plus when fielding focus groups, for instance.

Nevertheless, there is added value in commissioning translation services through a viewing facility. It may be self evident for some practitioners but it is worth outlining briefly. In fact, by hiring interpreting services from A Window, practitioners tap into our know how and obtain intangible benefits such as:

  • Project coordination. It is advisable to have a local project leader accountable for every part of the project; namely, special requirements, viewing facility, translation, interpretation, recruitment, moderation, timetables, etc. It also guarantees first-hand information and active involvement throughout the project.
  • Consistent results across all fields of research. Whatever the service requested, we look for the most adequate interpreter/translator for your assignment; thus, professional translation and interpretation is guaranteed. We know that each project has unique requirements. Therefore, we carefully pick interpreters and translators according to their individual profiles. To promote maximum efficiency, we have developed a translator pool from which we can draw personnel for your marketing assignments. Furthermore,if the right one is unavailable, our language agency partners, which are ISO 9001:2000 and UNE EN 15038:2006 certified, will provide us with fully qualified professionals.
  • Reliability. Confirming proper market research experience and specialization ensures that interpreters will work comfortably with the requirements of focus groups or face to face interviews.
  • Objective advice. Our recommendations may lead to savings and better performance. For instance, live interpreting may be exhausting for a given assignment but we are ready to advise you whether your project requires one or more interpreters.
  • Specialization. Benefit from the accumulated experience of interpreters, translators and dyads. Moderators, interpreters and translators gain confidence with every project and feel better equipped to tackle a wider range of situations. In particular, dyads need time and planning before being fully fledged. To nurture their development, we facilitate their working meetings and assist them in many different ways. Thus, the knowledge acquired in each project may be applied to the next.
  • Availability of moderator-interpreter dyads. At present, we have several working dyads readily available. The availability of this service is the conclusion of a long process of selection, development and specialization. Pairing up individuals adequately not only requires being acquainted with moderators and interpreters but also knowing their background and their skills. We only pair up bilingual English-Spanish individuals who have proven to work well together. Some of the characteristics we usually look for are: good interpreting skills, subject specialisation, openness, previous positive experiences and general awareness of market research.
From day one, A Window has developed bespoke written and simultaneous translation services based on the belief that market research is in itself a specialization that cannot be underestimated under any circumstances. Furthermore, the fact that we have fostered the development of moderator-interpreter dyads for over two years shows the way we understand the market research business.

Hiring moderator-interpreter dyads through A Window is as easy as making a phone call and it gives a plus to the interpreting of marketing research assignments such as focus groups. Do not hesitate to benefit from this far-reaching approach!

lunes, 11 de abril de 2011

Qualitatively Speaking:

A little homework can work wonders(1)

Respondent homework assignments, such as collage-building, audio recording of spontaneous impressions or "thought log" diaries, can improve respondent bonding and increase productivity.

Depending on the goals of a specific qualitative research assignment, it can be highly productive for respondents to arrive at focus groups thoroughly primed and well-immersed in a particular category. In order to accomplish this, a skilled moderator calls upon various tools and techniques in the form of respondent homework assignments. These might include activities such as collage-building, “thought log” diaries, audio recording of spontaneous impressions, cognitive sequencing and in-situ product photographs, to name a scant few. A broad array of tools and techniques can be used in tandem or individually, depending on appropriateness and project objectives. While there is obviously no one-size-fits-all application of these techniques, it is generally felt by this moderator that some form of respondent preparedness can enhance many qualitative investigations by heightening the depth and breadth of insight and learning.

The premise here is that when respondents are thoroughly “into” a particular subject matter, on a premeditated level, they are more psychologically and verbally equipped to contribute, in a meaningful way, to the specific research goals at hand. This preparedness, in turn, combats what we as qualitative researchers and clients have all, at one time or another, disappointingly experienced: the cocked heads and quizzical, empty stares of respondents reacting to questions that, from their perspective, come far out of left field, jarringly out of context with their everyday living experiences and thought processes. This is sometimes what happens when clients and researchers are too close to their products, when objectivity and an unbiased perspective are lacking. Why we do research, after all, is to gain deep insight into how consumers conceptualize and think about a particular category, how they filter choices and actually use a given product, brand or service. This is great, but let’s give our respondents some useful tools to help them dig beneath the surface to produce information that is truly revelatory and useful to brand and marketing groups.

Take for example the goal of getting to the core of brand image/essence in repositioning and branding work. Asking respondents to create separate collages epitomizing a competitive set of brand values, for instance, can really help unearth image distinctions and nuance - and reveal thoughts, feelings and associations which may otherwise be extremely difficult for respondents to articulate. There are other reasons for using this type of tool: Groups are simply livelier and more productive from the get-go. Following brief introductions at the beginning of the actual focus groups, discussion kicks off energetically with respondents telling the “story” of their collages (or other homework assignments), interpreting with ease what the visual images mean to them.

In designing effective qualitative study methodologies, researchers and clients should, therefore, carefully consider whether or not respondent preparedness will benefit study output. Homework assignments may well yield a number of advantages relative to strengthening group dynamics and, therefore, the quality of the learning that ensues:

Respondents immediately interact and bond with one another, resulting in less lost time due to respondent warm-up. When respondents arrive at focus groups with some form of homework assignment in hand, I have observed that they are far more likely to get acquainted with one another in the waiting area, which in turn reduces the amount of time required for group room warm-up. To set this interplay in motion, I typically drift into the respondent waiting area and announce that everybody in our group has, for example, kept a diary chronicling how kitchen remodelling decisions have been made - how design ideas were filtered, if and how husbands contributed to the overall process, the role of professional design consultants, what the biggest headaches were, etc. Given the animated discussion that usually follows, respondents then enter the group room with a sense of camaraderie and shared experience, which makes much of the standard introductory sequence superfluous.

Groups are more productive from the get-go. Given the above scenario and enhanced levels of familiarity and ease, respondents are ready to jump right into conversation. Because they have already essentially bypassed stiff, ritualistic introductory formalities (e.g., name, work, household composition, etc.), respondents are primed and ready to contribute to the heart of the research endeavour with deeper and more revelatory insights. This is not to assume, however, that every research topic lends itself to this approach. While waiting-room conversation about interior design decisions can, for example, be encouraged with highly involving, positive results, issues of a highly sensitive and/or personal nature - subjects involving potentially embarrassing topics such as incontinence, female pattern baldness, impotence - obviously do not lend themselves to this type of uninitiated, open waiting-room discussion. In these instances, homework assignments such as diaries, sentence completion exercises, adjective check lists and storytelling may be better used as private instruments shared only with the moderator.

Descriptions/portrayals of brand persona are animated and involving - and respondents are more able to verbalize emotional and multi-sensory responses that are otherwise difficult to articulate. Homework assignments involving all types of collage-building, cartoon drawing, fictionalized balloon dialoguing, and personifications are particularly useful to help respondents differentiate within categories that may be functionally commoditized. Take for example cooking oil, specifically corn oil. Without homework assignments and the application of projective techniques, home-makers in groups were unable to delineate, to any significant degree, between oil brands. When asked to develop collages at home that epitomized the respective brands, however, rich descriptions revealed brand-differentiating imagery which was firmly rooted in regional cooking traditions and the trans-generational influences of one’s mother, even grandmother.

The subtleties of situational context and spontaneous thought can be captured as they occur, rather than through the potentially distorting filter of recall. We all know what it’s like to try to reach back into the deep recesses of our minds and recreate a specific situation or set of circumstances - perhaps a range of conflicting emotions we felt at particular point in time, what factors influenced a specific buying decision, how a fragrance or aroma affected our mood, what distractions may have pulled us away from initial impulses, how the advice of a good friend or coercive salesperson may have eroded our buying convictions, etc. The point here is that, with the passage of time, our memory of occurrences gets clouded, and it is virtually impossible to reconstruct in focus group rooms many spontaneous thought processes. Recording this information through various homework assignments can, however, document this invaluable information.

The resulting expression of nuance can be useful for ad agencies and creative development. Client teams are able to quickly distil what brand essence and usage scenarios are all about.

Worth the effort
While it may cost researchers more time in terms of upfront planning and preparation, the application of homework assignments can often be worth the extra effort. An experienced moderator can determine whether or not this approach will benefit a given study and set of research objectives.
By Barbara Champion
Barbara Champion is principal of Chicago research firm B. Champion Associates.

(1) This article was originally published in December 2005 by Quirk’s Marketing Research Review

viernes, 18 de marzo de 2011

A Practitioner’s Perspective

Don’t blame the focus group for leaders’ shortcomings
By Susan Abbott(1) and Chris Shields Kann(2)

In an age of hyper-competition in virtually every industry, and rising consumer expectations, it seems curious that anyone would be criticized for listening to their customers. But even as the exhortations to be customer focused have grown louder, one of the key tools for good listening – the focus group – regularly comes under criticism.

One of the most influential books of the last decade, The Cluetrain Manifesto (2001), by Christopher Locke, Rick Levine, Doc Searls and David Weinberger, urged organizations to “come down from their Ivory Towers and talk to the people with whom they hope to create relationships.” Customers, they said, “have ideas for you too: new tools we need, some better service. Stuff we’d be willing to pay for,” and urged leaders to listen.

Listening, then, is a good thing. Few would argue that listening is what organizations must do. But some still insist they must not use marketing research techniques – especially focus groups – to do that listening?


In 2009, Catharine P. Taylor, writing for The Social Media Insider in an article titled, “Listen Up Marketers: The Focus Group is Dead,” references several examples of high profile reversals resulting from “not listening.” The Tropicana packaging change, the Motrin ad that offended mommy bloggers, the widely criticized name change of Syfy for the Sci-Fi channel, and Facebook’s 2009 design changes. When you deconstruct her article, you see that most of the examples are actually related to another phenomenon. Facebook made its 2009 format changes “without user input,” according to Taylor. No focus groups there.

Tropicana and Sci-Fi didn’t talk to “loyalist” customers, although they did do research. They may have done the wrong research. And Syfy changed their name even after they heard from their loyalists.

Misplaced criticism
So what Ms. Taylor is really slamming here is not marketing research at all, but marketing research that is badly used or even badly constructed. And she is also slamming those that didn’t bother to seek user input. She is slamming poor management decisions.

People tend to blame focus groups for all manner of poor judgment; for the innovative products that supposedly don’t get launched and for the good ideas that apparently are killed because of focus groups. But the question really is, did the focus group kill a good idea, or did it save the organization a ton of money on a potentially failed marketing effort?

Pity the poor focus group, a multi-function tool being blamed for the mistakes of its users. It’s like blaming the chairs at a dinner party for the quality of the food. When you look closely at most of these articles so critical of the focus group, the writer is usually trying to make quite a different point – they are usually trying to expose management cowardice or poor leadership that relies too much on research and those who won’t take a position of their own.

Malcolm Gladwell, author of Blink, is often thought to be the one who really put a stake in the heart of the focus group. In a speech to an advertising agency conference in 2005 he said,

Market research, when it is observational or when it is interpretative, is profoundly useful. But those are two critical things. They require the intervention of the person conducting the research. They require the findings that are gathered are considered,  and thought about, and processed and interpreted. (3)

As a researcher, I have found that a good dose of creativity is vital to bring up original solutions. Also, I have found that creativity comes from hard work. Only after many hours of study, I come to a point when I feel ready to view from different angles all the facts and quotations.

So Gladwell’s real argument is for nuance, for finesse, and for brains in research – not for ceasing to research. He suggests that the aesthetic of the Aeron chair was disliked in focus groups because it was so unfamiliar (despite rating very high on comfort). That Herman Miller management chose to go ahead with a launch of the chair despite these findings and generated a massively successful product, is taken to mean the focus group did not do its job.

But perhaps this is a story of a focus group doing its job well, and management doing its job well too. Management knew what initial reactions to the new product would be and could plan accordingly. The history of the Aeron chair on the Herman Miller website in fact makes it clear that extensive consumer research, including focus groups, informed the development of the product.

The focus group is often criticized as the wrong tool for product innovation. It is true that people don’t always know what the solution to their problems is, but they usually have a pretty good understanding of their problems.

Innovations come about because of a deep understanding of the customer experience. Organizations develop this deep knowledge by consistently talking to users, customers, and consumers.

The Listening Epidemic
The denigration of formal listening and insight processes – otherwise known as research –is not isolated to business. In the political sphere, the overall spending on opinion research by a given administration is viewed as governing by poll or similar criticisms. If our governments did not consult voters and taxpayers through research tools – including focus groups – they would be influenced only by the people they speak to directly.

Would we really be better off without qualitative research and its flag-carrier, the focus group? Or would a handful of bloggers and lobbyists drown out the voices of others?

The truth is, we live in a very complex world. Managers and executives are risk averse for good reason: mistakes are expensive in real dollars and in career terms. Making strategic decisions involves finding your way through complex information and often competing agendas.

So one might be sympathetic to a client that wished for research to actually make the ecision for them, instead of informing their decisions.

But research does not set strategic direction – managers do that. Your outside researcher, who spent many hours poring over the fieldwork, can give you an informed, independent and often very valuable viewpoint. But they should not make your management decisions. It would be nice to think that effective listening to customers could happen without all the infrastructure of the research industry, but this is wishful thinking. To gain the most insight, the listening process is best done with enough structure to assure validity.

Raise the Bar on Research
Instead of firing the focus group, we need to raise the bar on the researchers. You raise the bar by insisting on a professional, for a start. The act of asking a question doesn’t make it a good question. Many people have the skills needed to lead a group discussion, but that doesn’t make it a focus group. You find professionals by finding people who are engaged in their professional organizations, constantly investing in their own learning and the learning of others.

We need to raise the bar on ourselves as consultants and advisors. The Qualitative Research Consultants Association (QRCA) is actively engaged in providing education for its members and other professionals who use research for that reason: to improve the chance of qualitative research playing a key role in guiding and advising important management decisions.

The marketing research industry does have challenges. But it is far from stagnant. In fact, this industry has rapidly embraced the potential of new communications technologies to connect with people faster, cheaper, and in richer ways. We are, in fact, an industry of professional listeners. Our collective mission is to make the world a better place through the power of our listening and insight. The mirrored room and all that infrastructure – they are just the tables and chairs, and should never be confused with the main course.

(1) Susan Abbott is a qualitative researcher, facilitator and consultant specializing in customer experience. She helps organizations discover insights, design innovative solutions, and deliver results.
(2) Chris Shields Kann is the President and Owner of CSK Marketing, Inc., a marketing services firm that provides marketing assistance in the form of qualitative market research, facilitation, and product management support.
(3) Excerpts from a speech given by Malcolm Gladwell to the American Association of Advertising Agencies' Account Planning Conference in 2005, published in Advertising Age under the title “Focus groups should be abolished”, August 8, 2005.

Consumer’s behaviour. Restaurant Industry

Spanish attendance to bars is changing. This article sheds light on the reasons that explain why the average purchase per person has increased during the current crisis in Spain, even though the sales figures of the restaurant industry have shown a decline.

According to NPD Group’s Consumer report on Eating Trends, the Spanish restaurant industry, as well as ready-to-eat foods/beverages retail establishments suffered a drop in its sales of 2% along 2010.

In fact, if compared with 2006, the study shows that the restaurant industry has lost around 40 visits per person and year. This represents roughly the loss of 1 visit per week. In spite of this, NPD stresses the fact that Spain is still amongst the European countries where people enjoy eating out more frequently.

The lost in sales is partially put down to a fall in the visits of clients, which showed a 3% decline across 2010. In the hospitality business, some believe that any explanation of the facts should consider a three-fold perspective:
  • A change in the behaviour of Spaniards, who are now part of a more Europeanized society
  • The local enforcement of the anti-smoking law, which banned smoking in restaurants and bars
  • The economic crisis, which seems to have hit Spain more than Italy, the UK or Germany
However, what is most striking is that Spaniards increased the average expenditure by 1% during the same period. It is possible to infer that this behaviour is also a consequence of the economic crisis itself, as individuals go less frequently to the bar, but when they go, they tend to indulge themselves lavishly. Arguably, it doesn’t seem to be a bad way to face the crisis!

martes, 15 de febrero de 2011

A Practitioner’s Perspective

The value of a right question

Anibal Marrón, MD with MG Research Solutions and QRCA member, comments on the importance that many social researchers attribute to questions. Are we expecting too much from the answers?

Generally speaking, a researcher’s objective is to understand the way the variables play and how they interact with the issue that triggers the need for research in a given client. Usually, it involves making considerations about a mix of market signals and making choices about what is important; however, the signals are sometimes very weak or not self-explanatory.

Within this context, I tend to believe that questions are far more important than answers.  When I fail to perceive clear signals from the market all my alarms tend to switch alertness “on".  It is because I come to the conclusion that the mental model I am using to comprehend the facts is wrong. Thus, I assume that an important piece of the puzzle is missing and I need to think creatively to see beyond. 

As a researcher, I have found that a good dose of creativity is vital to bring up original solutions. Also, I have found that creativity comes from hard work.  Only after many hours of study, I come to a point when I feel ready to view from different angles all the facts and quotations.

Just then, I am able to deconstruct the knowledge and to forget momentarily the relationships attributed to the pieces of the jigsaw.  At this point in time, not only listening is important but also changing the mindset.  Search is thus guided by new questions that come from sensing different viewpoints, from exploring different sources of knowledge that may develop even further my ability to critically evaluate the issues.

In this respect, new questions enable practitioners to envision new relationships and new variables.  It is like fine-tuning our ears to hear a different frequency.  Basically, the value of a question lays not necessarily in obtaining an answer but in eliciting a new approach.
Questions help us to channel and categorise knowledge, they are intended to make us comprehend the meaning of the signals and only when we are capable of understanding them, we will be in a condition to reduce uncertainty.  Maybe, I should specify here that I am talking about big questions.  Those that are hard to find but, when structured, transform our perspective, our perceptions and patterns of measure.

In fact, this type of question has the power to introduce us into a new dimension.  A good question unfolds before us alternative pathways; its value resides in that it leads us to interpret reality through a different coordinate system.  Just then the answers become important.

Barcelona. Growing trend in medical tourism

Barcelona appears to be far more active in attracting the international patients on the lookout for medical services that are seemingly unavailable in their home countries due to lack of affordability, lack of availability, and/or lengthy waiting lists. The article examines the news and highlights some of its fieldwork implications.

Nowadays, based on its well developed medical service offer, Catalonia is trying to introduce itself as a location of health tourist providers.  With that in mind, this year the Catalan Agency of Tourism will be present in Los Angeles (EE.UU) at the World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress (WMT&GHC).  Before then, Barcelona will be hosting in April 2011 the IV European Medical Travel Conference, which is expected to gather around 400 participants.

According to BCM, the organization that works with 22 other private clinics to provide services at prestigious medical centres, over 10,000 international patients have been treated during 2008.   The figures published show a 4% increase in the hospitalizations and outpatient surgeries performed in foreign patients.  More precisely, there have been 4,710 procedures performed and around 5,100 consultations from international clients.

Having some of the most important hospitals and private clinics in Spain, Barcelona has long attracted highly respected physicians in many areas of expertise. This could be reason enough to choose it as a location for a consultation or a medical procedure but, more recently, the comparatively low cost of medical services and neighbouring countries’ legislation has helped Barcelona to get where it stands now.

Services typically sought by travellers include elective procedures as well as complex specialized surgeries such as joint replacement (knee/hip), cardiac surgery, dental surgery, cosmetic surgeries

Fieldwork implications
  • The researcher can find top respondents and key opinion leaders in almost all the specialities including plastic surgeons, cardiologists and fertilization specialists.
  • The newest techniques and procedures are likely to be performed in Barcelona.
  • It stands out as one of the ideal locations to research medical devices and medical instruments