The ethical responsibilities of marketers in retail observational research: protecting stakeholders through the ethical research covenant

Carrigan, Marylyn and Kirkup, Malcolm (2001). The ethical responsibilities of marketers in retail observational research: protecting stakeholders through the ethical research covenant. The International Review of Retail, Distribution and Consumer Research, 11(4) pp. 415–435.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/713770611

Abstract

Marketing research is a marketing function which needs to be seen to adhere to rigorous ethical practice due to the direct interface it has with the public. Although there are existing frameworks and codes which deal with the ethics of research, new technology and research techniques create gaps in guidelines and practice for marketing researchers. The responsibility of marketers to protect stakeholders affected by their actions is acknowledged, but retail service employees are vulnerable stakeholders who are often overlooked by ethical guidelines. This paper examines the role of ethics in marketing research in relation to retail observational research, the conflicts and challenges which ethical responsibility presents to marketing researchers, and offers solutions to the gap between societal expectation and current practice.

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