A sociological survey is a method of studying the opinion of the public, consumers and professionals. It is actively used to resolve civil and administrative disputes. For example, since as early as 2000, the Federal Service for Construction and Housing Policy (Gosstroy) has in place the “Guidelines for developing the procedure whereby the public may participate in discussions and decision-making regarding housing development and land use in cities and other settlements”. Those guidelines describe among other things the procedure for opinion surveys for urban planning decision-making. The GOST R 53574-2009 Standard “Evaluation of the irritating effect of noise through social and acoustic surveys” establishes the rules for measuring the effect of such facilities as airports, railroads and highways.

ДSociological surveys are actively used for intellectual property protection. The Rules for recognizing a trademark as publicly known in the Russian Federation recommends using survey results as proof of consumers’ awareness of a trademark (section 2.2. of the Rules). Surveys became especially popular in courtrooms after the Presidium of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation adopted Resolution No. 3691/06 on 18 July 2006 where the decision to recognize the existence of confusing similarity was based among other things on sociological data.

Depending on the objective of research, our laboratory uses the following kinds of surveys.
Descriptive surveys are conducted on representative samples allowing making general conclusions concerning the consumers of specific products or services. One typical example of a descriptive survey is the measurement of the trademark notoriety level.
Analytical surveys providing more deep sociological analyses requiring not only representative samples, but also the use of special models allowing to access facts that cannot be directly observed. For example, answering such questions as what compensation payable to the owner would be adequate to losses incurred because of confusingly similarity to the owner’s trademark.
Monitoring surveys are regularly repeated representative surveys using standard samples and tools. Our Monitoring, allows our customers to obtain significant savings and purchase readymade data. Since the results of monitoring surveys contain reliable information about consumers’ opinion at a certain point in the past, they can help proving retrospectively the well-known status, of a designation or that a designation has acquired a distinctiveness as a result of active use and when determining the priority regarding the first use of a designation.
Pilot surveys helps to find out how efficient survey questions are and what information they are able to obtain, without using the expensive representative sample. A pilot survey is conducted using a simplified scheme to verify the assumptions made by the customer. It involves a small number of subjects (50-100 persons) and allows the prompt collection of data. Based on the result of such survey, it is easier to decide whether further research is necessary.

Examples of survey use:
Well-known status: Case for recognition of NIKON, VOGUE, “BABKINY SEMECHKI”.
Confusing similarity: retention of rights to the «Kak korovka yazykom slizala» due to there being no similarity.
Unfair competition: preserve design dispute involving two large producers “Raptika” and “Russkoe more”.
Distinctiveness: revocation of prohibition to register the «IF» trademark or confirmation of the distinctiveness of the «Raffaello».
Advertising compliance with laws: Nestle Russia filed a complaint against Hipp baby food advertising with the Federal Antimonopoly Service.

Sociological surveys may be useful for other purposes. The Sociology Expert Laboratory also offers free services.

For detailed information on how sociological surveys are set up and conducted or to order a sociological survey, please call (Tel.) 8-800-500-97-95 or enquire by email to: info@socexpertiza.ru (with “order for a sociological survey” in the subject).