Market research in Belgium

Belgium has a relatively small population compared to ‘Big 5’ Western European countries (its population is around 25% that of Spain) but it lies in a strategically important position within Western Europe. Brussels is home to a number of key institutions of the European Union.

European institutions in the capital include the European Commission (the executive branch of the EU), the Council of Ministers and the European Council. Belgium is therefore an important location for market research that has any kind of European political or regulatory dimension.

Belgium is divided into three autonomous regions: the Dutch-speaking Flemish Region in the north, French-speaking Wallonia in the south, and the Brussels-Capital Region in the middle, where the majority of residents also speak French as their first language (although English is also widely spoken in Brussels). It is important to bear these linguistic differences in mind when planning any kind of national market research in Belgium.

Population (2020 estimate):11.6 million
GDP (2018):$543 billion
GDP per capita (International $ at PPP, 2018):$51 408
Currency:Euro (EUR or €)
Largest urban areas (by population, 2018 estimates):Brussels (2.1 million)
Antwerp (1.0 million)


Standing female moderator gesturing to a TV screen in front of market research respondents in a focus group

Focus groups on technology policy in Berlin, Brussels, Helsinki, Milan, Paris and Warsaw

Our client wanted to hold focus group discussions with members of the public and opinion elites in Europe on their perceptions of the way that technology companies use artificial intelligence. In FieldworkHub’s largest qualitative project to date, we arranged three face-to-face focus groups in each of Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy and Poland. This involved recruiting 240 respondents over a period of 5 weeks. We also made viewing facility bookings in each capital city, arranged moderators and simultaneous interpreters for each session and provided transcripts of every discussion.

Close-up of market research participant taking part in dial test (Dialsmith, Inc image used with permission)

Dials market research with opinion leaders in Brussels

As part of a multi-country study for a major technology company, we recruited opinion leaders living in Brussels to take part in two large focus groups (25 respondents at a time) that made use of handheld dials to track their responses to the ideas shared by the moderator in real time. We were able to recommend a viewing facility that could accommodate the number of respondents and supported our client with all of the logistics involved, including translation of the stimulus materials into French and simultaneous translation of the sessions back into English for the benefit of the client representatives who were viewing.

Standing female moderator talking to a diverse group of seated participants during a focus group discussion

Focus groups in the UK, Germany, France and Belgium on public policy topics

A leading US-based qualitative research agency wanted to organise a series of large focus groups in Europe over the course of five weeks for two divisions of a large global corporation. FieldworkHub provided end-to-end project management of the fieldwork process. Using our expert knowledge, we found and booked suitable facilities in all four countries and recruited around 400 respondents to take part. We also provided moderators and interpreters, arranged for stimulus materials to be translated where necessary and for English transcripts to be provided after the sessions.