Social research

Social Research_A

Listening, listening and analysing a situation in great detail from multiple points of view, allows the most effective outcomes to be achieved.

Social research

To understand the dilemmas our clients face we need a thorough understanding of them from multiple points of view. Enabling our clients to understand the challenges they are facing today and, crucially, those they may face in the future, is a key part of empowering our clients to be sustainable innovative leaders in communities they impact and society at large.

In order for our clients to implement strategy that provides future-ready outcomes, Futureye has developed a social research approach that explores not only the status quo view of issues for organisations, but also, what has affected actual behaviour change for stakeholders. We also assess what future issues may present themselves and what the stakeholder response is likely to be, both to the issues themselves and to particular communications or engagement approaches.

Futureye’s methodology is underpinned by decades of research on how outrage impacts stakeholder views of risk and what mitigation strategies are proven to be most effective to reduce societal angst and therefore reputational damage or loss of social licence. By interrogating what actually causes behaviour change for stakeholders (including activists and opponents) and what emotional factors are at play, Futureye is able to offer clients the choice to be reactive, proactive or innovative in how they respond to stakeholders and mitigate any risks. Understanding the drivers of outrage allows organisations to nullify concerns by addressing their root cause rather than trying to apply technical fixes to emotional problems. The outcome of this type of research is the ability to assess which strategies may slow or halt stakeholders’ move towards opposition – towards withdrawal of a social licence for an organisation – and which may move stakeholders back to a position of support.

Futureye offers a full suite of social research services including:

  • Focus groups (face to face/online)
  • Stakeholder interviews (face to face/phone/online)
  • Ethnographic research
  • Organisational culture assessments
  • Quantitative surveys
  • Social impact assessments
  • Materiality assessments
  • Social antagonism/issues tracker and reputation reports



David is head of Planning, Engagement, and Social Research for Futureye, with significant experience consulting on social licence issues.

He completed a double degree in Law and International Studies from the University of Adelaide, where he refined his interests in the intersects and disconnects between regulatory permission and social acceptance. These intersects are particularly significant in understanding the role of corporations in sustainable development. David has used Futureye’s WikiCurve tool to map the maturity of society’s expectations for corporations to deliver on sustainable development. As such, he is an expert guide of how to navigate between the legal and societal expectations on sustainable development in a way that protects and builds social licence.


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We’re happy to arrange a consultation with you to better understand your needs.