Read about our views on marketplace changes as well as updates on our research and event programmes.

Is data REALLY the new oil?

Posted: 20th April, 2015 | 0 comments

There are many ways in which the ‘data is the new oil’ analogy works: the common need for extraction and refining; the way both became vital resources driving wealth creation across every aspect of the economy; the way they changed both how wealth is created and who the key players are; the way they both created new corporate superpowers that swept all before them – and new regulatory battles (witness the EU’s complaint against Google for anti-competitive practices).


The new solar?

But there is also a darker side that both sides share. Fossil fuels generate toxic emissions which threaten…

The power of decision support

Posted: 6th April, 2015 | 0 comments

Readers of our weekly Market Watch newsletter may have noticed an accelerating theme – the increasingly pervasive influence of price comparison services. They’re transforming physical shopping via new mobile services. They’re getting embedded into daily tools and processes such as web browsers. They’re reaching every conceivable sector.

As far as we (Ctrl-Shift) are concerned this is just the beginning, because price comparison is just one element of a bigger service: decision support.

Decision support embraces not only price comparison but product/service comparison (quality, service), which is often highlighted by peer and expert reviews. It extends into further considerations…

For some time now we’ve been talking about personal data’s Perfect Storm. Storm clouds are gathering as many different forces – commercial interests and initiatives, rapidly shifting public opinion, technological innovation and change, legal and regulatory developments – all combine to trigger a climate-changing deluge.

Readers of our weekly newsletter Market Watch will understand what we’re talking about. This week as a perfect example.

On the legal front, Google faces UK legal action over alleged privacy violations while a battle between Facebook and privacy activists reaches the European.


Big brand manoeuvring

Big brands are meanwhile manoeuvring to…

You know things are on the move when, suddenly, concepts that were hardly talked about a few years ago are now on everyone’s lips. That’s what’s happening right now with ‘transparency’ and individuals having ‘control’ over their personal data. These were the themes at the Market Research Society conference session on personal data. They’re also emerging as part of the UK general election battle.


The costs of ‘control’

So it’s time to dig a little deeper. Are transparency and control unadulterated benefits? The answer, sadly, is ‘No’. They have a cost – a potentially high cost at…