Call for Synopses

Print brands are evolving rapidly as digital delivery of content becomes commonplace. Business models are changing with Print (newspapers and magazines) just one of several platforms available to distribute content.

How our measurement tools and concepts meet the requirements of this new world, how we help publishers, agencies and advertisers to understand the purpose of different platforms and demonstrate their relevance, how the consumer makes use of them, now and in the future – in short, how we embrace change is the theme of the next Symposium.

This is our CALL FOR SYNOPSES for papers for the 13th Worldwide Readership Research Symposium, to be held in Vienna, Austria, in October 2007. Synopses for proposed papers should reach the Secretariat by Friday 2 March 2007 at the latest (see below for further details).

Media Brands

Our focus on Media Brands widens our remit. Print as a medium is easier to define than a media brand. Therefore, our questions will be as follows: How do we define a media brand? Where do we draw the line? How do consumers view and use these brands? What are the overlaps between printed and online editions of newspapers and magazines, both in content and audiences? How do we measure these audiences? What are the values of different platforms to advertisers? How can research help to optimise each?
Are we now in the business of researching the business of media or are we still only concerned about the written word, whatever the means of delivery? What is the role of the media researcher in this world of change?

The Readership Currency

The direction Print is taking poses the question of whether our readership currency is still appropriate. Do we need to change it? What would be the consequences? Given that the desire for a stable currency is understandably great, how can any potential additional measures, often asked for by planners, be balanced with the need and challenges the industry faces? We need to consider that it seems inevitable that the concept and reality of media brands will not only affect our readership definition, but very likely our underlying readership model. Is Specific Issue Readership a better solution than Average Issue Readership in these circumstances? How different is the former compared with the latter? How do we explain the differences – are they real or are they survey effects? How can we move forward – is perhaps rapid reporting the real issue here or is it validity?

Return on Investment

Return on investment was the theme of our last Symposium, Prague 2005. This will remain a relevant topic for Vienna 2007. How do we demonstrate ROI for Print? Are our tools sufficient and clear? Having conducted special studies, how can we then make it easier for the planner to use the relevant data?

Affinity – Engagement – Quality of Contact

These are subjects much talked about but not always used. Why should that be so? How does the concept of media brands affect the definitions and measures of affinity and engagement? Which are the measures that work in practice and can be used universally? What should be done differently in the planning process as a result of our knowledge, be it old or new, in relation to quality of contact, as signified by concepts such as involvement, affinity and engagement?

Advertising Effectiveness

How can we improve our methods designed to demonstrate Print advertising effectiveness? What is the contribution of copy testing? What role has neuroscience to play in readership research? What are the new measures, what do they tell us, and how can they be used? How is the division of labour between agency and publisher changing with regard to matching advertisements with magazines and suitable issues? What does it mean for research?

Multi-Media Planning

What new tools are available for cross-media planning? What are the new insights relating to Print? What is the contribution of Print now that we need to consider the different platforms on which it operates? What can we learn from new studies looking at the media day of consumers?

Validity of Methods

Most of our readership surveys are conducted face to face. What are the implications of low response rates? What effect do they have on sample composition and stability? Is switching to online research a solid solution to address such problems? Do the advantages of online research outweigh the disadvantages?

How can we overcome the problem of data volatility, which affects most continuous surveys, regardless of interview mode, and which is seen by many as a greater obstacle to credibility than low response rates? On what grounds are circulation data often trusted more than readership? How can circulation and readership be reconciled?

Technology and Online Data Collection

What are the new developments and insights, the pros and cons of new technology and online data collection? What can Print researchers learn from the use of new technology employed in relation to other media, such as GPS for Outdoor? What is the latest on the use of passive measurement including RFID systems?

Refining our Methods

What is new to report regarding technical issues? Are issues of model bias, questionnaire length, order effects and title confusion properly addressed? How are these solved when going online? How do we make use of databases and how can we integrate them successfully with readership studies? Are databases complementary or a threat to readership research? What are the problems of reconciling behavioural data with survey data?

Do our national sample universes properly reflect the increasing internationalisation of our countries’ populations? How can this be verified and possibly rectified?

How do we sample specialist populations for readership research these days? What are the problems of using access panels for this purpose? How can the problems be overcome? How can we forecast the future media behaviour of the MySpace generation? How can we organise such research?

The Global Dimension

What is needed to make planning in emerging markets easier, be they big or small? What is new, what are the problems, how are they solved? How do research standards differ? Is harmonisation of standards desirable, given that harmonisation often means relatively low standards in pursuit of common denominators, instead of the high standards for which readership research is traditionally known?

By addressing these and similar questions in Vienna 2007, we hope to bring together the diverse experiences of speakers from agencies, advertisers, publishers and research companies, from all parts of the world. The presentation of papers and their ensuing discussions, which will be recorded, will benefit both old and young practitioners in this exciting field of business, and all those who are interested in the issues facing Print and Print research and are concerned about the future.

13th Worldwide Readership Research Symposium


Synopses for Original Papers

We invite synopses for original papers to be submitted to the Symposium Secretariat by Friday 2 March 2007 at the latest. They should not exceed 300 words and enable the

Programme Committee to judge the likely quality of the proposed paper and its potential usefulness to the Symposium audience. Final papers not showing results and supporting data are strongly discouraged. Synopses should describe the background to the subject of the paper and the new work done, and state whether it will show new data.

Each synopsis must include the title of the proposed paper (if at all possible that title should not be changed for the final paper), the name of the author(s), their organisation(s), position(s), email(s), telephone number(s) and postal address(es).

Invitations to write full papers will be sent to selected authors towards the end of April 2007, and the written full papers will be required by the Secretariat not later than 8 September 2007.

We trust that this Call for Synopses stimulates you to submit your synopsis. In case of doubt or queries, please do not hesitate to contact me, Erhard Meier, Programme Chairman ( or Dawn Mitchell, the Symposium President ( We are looking forward to hearing from you.


Synopses to be received at the latest by Friday 2 March 2007
Papers invited in late April 2007
Registration Forms available at the end of May 2007
Full papers to be received by 8 September 2007
On site registration commences in Vienna on Saturday 20 October 2007
Working sessions Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 21-24 October 2007
Gala Dinner and Closing Ceremony Wednesday 24 October 2007

Synopses should be sent to:
Sandy Burdett, Symposium Secretariat,
c/o Ipsos MORI, Kings House,
Kymberley Road, Harrow HA1 IPT,
United Kingdom
Tel :+44 (0) 20 8861 8030
Fax :+44 (0) 20 8861 5515 or 8863 6647


Dawn Mitchell – President


Andy Brown – KMR Group
Richard Silman – Ipsos Media
Erhard Meier – Programme Chairman
Richard Asquith
Peter Callius
Research International (Sweden)
Flavio Ferrari
IBOPE (Brazil)
Marty Frankel
Mediamark Research Inc (USA)
Andrew Green
ZenithOptimedia (UK)
Scott McDonald
Condé Nast Publications (USA)
Katherine Page
Consultant to NRS (UK)
Rolf Pfleiderer
TNS Infrastest Research (Germany)
Kate Sirkin
SMG Worldwide
Costa Tchaoussoglou
TNS-NIPO (The Netherlands)
Andraz Zorko
VALICON (Slovenia)

John Bermingham
Consultant to KMR Group (UK)
Jean- Louis Marx
AudiPresse (France)

Worldwide Readership Research Symposia
Sponsors: KMR Group and Ipsos Media