John Burns, Ph.D.


John Burns is a principal in the Insights for Innovation practice area of Applied Marketing Science (AMS). He joined the company in 2012, and he has been helping companies use insights to improve innovation since 1999.

John helps clients meet new product and service innovation challenges. He takes the time to understand their business problems and guides them toward the most effective solution to meet their needs. His work includes clients in business-to-business and business-to-consumer markets in the US and internationally. His experience and expertise covers a range of industries, including industrial products, financial services, technology, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, food and beverage and household products.

An experienced research moderator, John effectively facilitates interviews with diverse groups ranging from professionals in highly technical positions to everyday consumers. His expertise extends beyond interviewing and includes observational ethnographic techniques as well. In addition, John has extensive training and experience in the use of quantitative research methods. This often involves the use of complex analysis, such as segmentation and choice-based research (e.g., conjoint). He can effectively communicate the results of this work to clients.

A gifted teacher and facilitator, John has years of experience teaching in academic and professional settings. He regularly conducts training for clients on the effective use of research to support innovation. He also frequently presents and writes articles on topics related to research and innovation. In addition, he serves as host of the popular AMS “Insights and Innovation Coffee Break Webinar” series, where he discusses best practices for using research to support innovation.

Prior to joining AMS, John was a senior account director at the Forbes Consulting Group, where he worked with Fortune 1000 companies in the packaged goods, pharmaceutical and financial services industries. He also co-founded Isurus Market Research & Consulting, a full-service primary market research firm specializing in the business-to-business technology sector. He was a client services director at Research International.

John holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Connecticut.

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