“The following scenarios present a set of ethical dilemmas
that might arise in marketing research. Your assignment is to decide what action to take in each instance. You should be prepared to justify your decision. Bear in mind that there are no uniquely right answers: Reasonable people may choose different courses of action.1.You are the market research director
of a pharmaceutical company, and the executive director suggests to you that companyinterviewerstelephoneph
ysiciansunderthename of a fictitious market research agency.
The purpose of the survey is to help assess the perceived quality of the company ’ s products, and it is felt that the suggested pro-cedure will result in more objective responses.What action would you take? 2.You are employed by a marketing research firm
and have conductedanattitudestudyforacl
ient.Yourfindingsindicate that the product ’ s marketing efforts are not effec-tive. This finding is badly received by the client ’ s product managementteam.
from your formal report, which you know will be widely distributed, on the grounds that the oral presentation was adequate for their needs.What do you do? 3.You are a study director for a research company
undertak-ing a project for a regular client of your company. A study you are working on is about to go into the field when the questionnaireyousenttotheclien
tforfinalapprovalcomes back drastically modified. The client has rewritten it,
biasedscales.Anaccompanying letter indicates that the questionnaire must be sent out as revised. You do not believe that valid infor-mation can be gathered using the revised instrument.What action would you take? 4.A well‐respected public figure
is going to face trial on a chargeoffailingtoreporthispart
ownershipofcertainregulated companies while serving as a Canadian provin-cialminister.
aperaccounts of how this approach has been used in a number of instances.What action would you take? 5.You are the market research director for a large chemical company
ismisuse,though customers are wasting money by using too much of the product at one time. You are shown the new adver-
agency.Theadsnotonly ignore this problem of misuse, they actually seem to encourage it.What action would you take? 6.
rinternshiptomeet your supervisor and get your first assignment.
em you are a student doing a study on the industry and get the answers to the questions. She says you should not tell them you are working for the company
over the sum-merandadds“
ingthem—omitting the fact is not really lying.” You ask her whatyoushoulddoif theyask,andshesays‘
justtellthem you are a student working on a paper and you don ’ t want to get a poor grade on the assignment.”What action would you take? 1 These vignettes were provided through the courtesy of Professor Charles Weinberg,