In the research business, it’s important to have data. However, to be credible, you also need transparency.

If you’re a Forrester client, you have access to the data we collect for our research. Obviously, that helps you maintain confidence in the advice we give. However, transparency is as much about community as it is about confidence.

In academia, you’ll often hear the expression research community. That phrase describes an active discussion among those involved about (1) what needs to be studied, (2) how these topics should be studied, and (3) the conclusions individual researchers reach. Subjects, methodology, results–whether you’re a physicist or an historian, a lot of people always have a lot to talk about.

Forrester already invites you, Dear Reader, to tell us what questions you’d like to see us answer. You can see the current list of planned research here. My research topics will appear on that page soon; meanwhile, you can always talk to me directly through this blog.

This transparency about our topics has special importance for product management in the technology industry. As discussed in an earlier post, product management is an immature discipline in an immature industry. Connecting with your peers, across organizations, is an all-too-rare part of a product manager’s job. Forrester’s transparency–through our research, leadership boards, major events, workshops, and even the comments section of this blog–helps you to connect to the rest of the research community for product management. Take the opportunity to wave hello.