Est. 1994

After 30 years working with the world’s leading membership organisations, we’ve learnt a few things.

Our team has grown along with our reputation, and new challenges continue to emerge; from the rise of portfolio careers to the impact of AI. We’re convinced – there’s no more diverse or stimulating sector to work in than Membership.

Here’s a quick overview of the journey we’ve been on since 1994. Let’s hope the next 30 years are just as exciting and rewarding as the last.



Research by Design founded by Heather Forrester


First British Chambers of Commerce project completed


RICS becomes a client


First office opened in Birmingham city centre


Research by Design sets up its specialist Membership team, led by Ruth Bolle, current Managing Partner


Membership clients make up 63% of revenue


Research by Design develops its Member Engagement Model and co-authors Member Engagement Toolkit with MemberWise


Research by Design launches the influential Member Value Proposition (MVP) model


Research by Design joins the Box Delta Group


Repositions to focus solely on the membership sector


'PulseCheck', a pro bono syndicated Covid tracker launched to support the sector


Research by Design publishes a report on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion within the membership sector


Research by Design celebrates relationships with 70 separate membership clients


Student insights tracker developed


“Working with the RbD team has been easy and efficient and at no point did we ever feel that our needs or requests had been misinterpreted, or that there was any danger of any of our requirements going unfulfilled. As a client of RbD you’re treated with the utmost priority, and the team will often take the time to respond quickly to any queries and accommodate any extra tasks.

Outcomes of the research provided by RbD are already being used to inform important business decisions and will continue to do so in the future. We now have a much clearer view on our members’ thoughts, feelings, needs and wants than we have ever had before, and our organisation will continue to benefit from this in the coming years.”

Member Engagement Manager, Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)

Member of Member Wise
Member of Memcom