Codes and Guidelines

We offer you a rich library of guidance to boost the quality of your activities. From our standard-setting ICC/ESOMAR International Code on Market, Opinion and Social Research and Data Analytics and guidelines or practical documents to help you get the most out of your data-driven projects.


Members benefit from additional custom support via our helpdesk and community hub.

  1. Home
  2. Codes and Guidelines

Guidelines for Research

The guidelines, developed in collaboration with our network of partners, including the ICC and Global Business Research Network (GRBN), set the international standards for ethical and professional conduct when carrying out data-driven projects to help you meet key expectations.

Guideline on Duty of Care
Protecting research subjects from harm. Issued with GRBN.
Guideline for Researchers and Clients Involved in Primary Data Collection
Your responsibilities when directly collecting data for your projects. Issued with GRBN.
Guideline When Processing Secondary Data for Research
Your responsibilities when re-using pre-existing data in your projects. Issued with GRBN.
Guideline on Research and Data Analytics with Children, Young People, and Other Vulnerable Individuals
Your key requirements when working with these groups. Issued with GRBN.

Practical Guidance

This collection of practical guidance aims to ensure you are asking the right questions at the start, during and after your data-driven projects so that you and your organisation can make use of the best insights.

20 questions to help buyers of AI-based services for market research and insights
This checklist is designed to guide market, opinion, social researchers and data analysts seeking to commission AI-based services.
37 Questions to Help Buyers of Online Samples
Briefing questions for buyers and users sourcing samples online
How to improve research participants’ experience and enhance data quality
Enhance online survey engagement, seeking feedback on its structure, questions, and follow-up activities for improvement.
Data Protection Checklist
Translating complex data protection laws into your key requirements

Opinion Polls and Published Surveys

ESOMAR has guidelines for professionals to maintain trust and confidence in opinion polls. These guidelines are drafted with the World Association of Public Opinion Research (WAPOR). Use our guide to ensure your opinion polling project meets international norms:

The Freedom to Conduct and Publish Opinion Polls
Issued with the World Association for Public Opinion Research (WAPOR)
Guideline on Opinion Polls and Published Surveys
Issued with the World Association for Public Opinion Research (WAPOR)
Can you trust polls?
Our expert tells you everything you need to know about polls

Hot Topics

Responsive to your needs, the community and its experts frequently update our core guidance documents with emerging practices and issue guidance on specific, emerging hot topics.

Artificial Intelligence
Exploring the potential for groundbreaking technology
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Contributing to efforts to make research inclusive
COVID-19
Guidance and support for the research community

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

If you are responsible for collecting and analysing personal data, the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation by the European Union encourages you to review your practices to ensure you remain compliant continually.

Allow us to help you on top of these requirements. Our guidance translates the complex legislation in the context faced by insights and analytics professionals and organisations: