Following the issuing of new lockdown restriction for England, MRS has issued new guidance interpreting the restrictions, specifying the implications for face to face data collection in England.

Some points to note from the new guidance:

  • As a result of the new England lockdown restrictions, research practitioners must only undertake essential face to face data collection which cannot be achieved using other methods such as telephone, online or mail.
  • Research practitioners have a responsibility to protect participants and the reputation of the profession.
  • Research practitioners must undertake risk assessments of any proposed essential face to face data collection exercise before beginning the activity and determine if face to face data collection is essential. If not essential, research practitioners must use alternative data collection methods such as online, telephone, mail etc.

Full details including other issues such as travel, social distancing, facial coverings can be found here in the new guidance.

The MRS Standards Team are continuing to review and update the MRS guidance as and when required including developments in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The existing MRS Covid-19 guidance documents continue to apply supplementing the guidance issued today: 

If you have any queries about the MRS Code or any of the MRS’ Covid-19 guidance please contact the MRS Standards Team via the MRS Codeline service (


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