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Re:Think 2009: The Arf 55th Annual Convention + Expo Shifting from Consumer to the Human

February 24, 2009

New York, NY – February 24, 2009

The ARF is rewriting the ways of research.  Through social media and digital technology, they are finding a window into the soul of the consumer that never existed before.  “We are creating a roadmap that combines this rich source of insights with the new lens provided by cognitive science, behavior economics and anthropology.  Our industry is at a watershed moment for how we go about uncovering insights that will inspire a marketing organization.  And the gateway for this is our Annual Convention.” says Joel Rubinson, ARF Chief Research Officer.

The recent ARF Industry Leader Forum in San Francisco highlighted this need for researchers to move beyond their traditional quantitative feeds and tap into new listening channels.  Re:think 2009: The ARF’s 55th Annual Convention + Expo (NY Marriott Marquis, 3/30-4/1/09) will demonstrate how to do this, delivering a detailed lesson on how to connect with the human within the consumer.  The three-day event will provide a more precise outlook on how to address today’s challenges from finding the customer’s unprompted voice to understanding the compassion needed to connect with stunned Americans during this economic crisis.

“At at time when it is needed most, researchers have a need to enhance the value of what they do” says Robert Barocci, ARF President and CEO, “There is an increasing sense of urgency regarding the need to shift the focus from the consumer to the actual human.”

‘Putting humans at the center’ is the consistent theme of the convention.  World class advertisers, research pioneers, noted scientists and visionary thinkers are converging to illustrate the new mindset and approach essential to achieve a deep human understanding of the customer.  The Expo showcases a wealth of suppliers and technologies within market research including a new Listening Zone, where attendees can learn about the main resources, tools and techniques available to tap into the continuous stream of naturally occurring conversations and behaviors that exist in digital media.  

Key Speakers include:

  • Co-Chairs: Thom Blischok – President, Consulting and Innovation at Information Resources, Inc (IRI). and Susan D. Whiting - Vice Chair, The Nielsen Company
  • Advertisers and media companies: Donna Goldfarb - VP of Consumer & Market Insights, Unilever Americas; Stephen Kim - Senior Director, Microsoft Branded Experiences and Entertainment, Microsoft Advertising; Michael Perman – Senior Director, Consumer Insights and Consumer Relations, Levi Strauss & Co.; Colleen Fahey Rush - EVP, Research, MTV Networks; David Verklin – CEO, Canoe Ventures; Susan Wagner - VP Global Strategic Insights, Johnson & Johnson Global Consumer Companies; Alan Wurtzel – President, Research & Media Development, NBC Universal
  • Scientists: Dr. Nathan Berg – Associate Professor of Economic, University of Texas; Dr. Bob Deustch – Founder, Brain Sells; Grant McCracken – Research Affiliate, C3, MIT; Dr. Drew Westen – Co-Founder, Thinkscan.com and Professor, Emory University;
  • Researchers:  David Calhoun – Executive Board Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Nielsen Company; Sunil Garga – Principal, Mphasize Analytics; Mary Ann Packo – CEO, Millward Brown North America; Eric Salama – Chairman and CEO, The Kantar Group; Dr. Romesh Wadhwani, Chairman, Information Resources, Inc. (IRI)
  • Futurists: Dr. Gary Flake, Microsoft Technical Fellow, and Founder and Director of Live Labs, Microsoft; Bob Johansen – Distinguished Fellow, Institute for the Future; Jerry Zaltman – Founding Partner, Olson Zaltman Associates and Professor Emeritus, Harvard Business School

ARF Expo Listening Zone:

  • Communispace, Converseon, Emsense, iModerate, The Nielsen Company, Radian6, Ripple6, Thinkscan, TNSCymfony,and Visible Technologies

Media Contact
Advertising Research Foundation 
Barry Schwartz
212-677-8700 Ext 18
barry@schwartzpr.com

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