Our Research Process

Participate in Our Research

Research participants receive complimentary key findings.


Cerulli’s research process is institutionalized and consistent across all initiatives. All of our research blends proprietary qualitative methodologies with data gathering via surveys. Our institutionalized research process, shown on the right, is one of our most prized assets. Our process has remained constant since 1994 and has established Cerulli as the most consistent and reliable resource in the industry.

Our complementary product lines consist of reports, periodicals, and a data platform — each available across our practice areas: retail asset management, institutional asset management, managed accounts, intermediary, high-net-worth, annuities and insurance, retirement, retail investor, global, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Our global practice examines more than 40 countries on an ongoing basis, giving our clients regular insight into the addressability and attractiveness of markets around the globe. Our experienced account management team works with you to determine which products will most benefit your firm.

Planning and Development

Collective input from clients, Cerulli analysts, and our account management team determine our annual agenda and ongoing research topics. We meet regularly to shape our annual agenda, which becomes available in late summer for our clients’ budgeting process. We hold cross-practice brainstorms for each Cerulli Report, Cerulli Edge issue, and Lodestar subscription, to ensure that we are including the data and insight most important to our clients. For each research initiative, the project’s lead analyst develops and follows a corresponding work plan that is constantly reviewed by our senior management. This work plan ensures that our process is followed for every initiative. Our Lodestar product development team plays a key role in training and supporting our users, who in turn provide direct insight for future development and refinement.

Quantitative Research

Dedicated personnel in Boston, Singapore, and London use our survey engine to execute over 75 surveys each year to institutions and advisors worldwide. Thousands of survey results integrate with countless additional sources for further interpretation. Cerulli Lodestar, our analytics platform, contains our data and survey results which enhances uniformity and consistency. With centralized data collection and a single platform, we link findings from across practices and present a comprehensive view of the industry.

We have more than 30 partnerships with industry associations, trade organizations, and firms, which support our comprehensive data collection.

In their unique role, our research relationship managers — present in each of our offices — oversee these partnerships. They are also responsible for supporting our clients’ participation in our research initiatives.

Our clients receive many benefits for completing our confidential surveys, including complimentary research, key findings, and benchmarking reports, which highlight their firm’s responses relative to their peer group. Dedicated quantitative analysts oversee all data for accuracy, survey analysts manage the distribution and data collection, and a survey review group ensures consistency and quality across all Cerulli surveys.

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Qualitative Research

Each year, our analysts conduct more than 1,000 hour-long interviews. To ensure accurate and deep insight, each research initiative requires at least 30 interviews. We provide key findings from the related report in exchange for participation; all interviews are anonymous and we aggregate the results to protect individual and firm responses. We then archive the interviews into our powerful database for future internal use. Research participants enjoy a direct relationship with Cerulli analysts. Our senior staff manages all aspects of our research process, and on average have been employed by Cerulli for more than a decade, with an additional 10+ years of prior relevant experience.

Assembly & Quality Control

Each Cerulli analyst follows the same process and uses the resulting quantitative and qualitative research to assemble the product. Cerulli analysts conduct quantitative analysis using Lodestar, our interactive analytics platform. This sophisticated platform is a proficient tool for developing project-specific analyses. Lodestar analysts and developers work closely with our research analysts to ensure that it contains the most up-to-date data. To ensure quality, accuracy, and consistency, our editors are involved from the very start of the process. They partner with our internal designers and desktop publishers to finalize the content and create the finished product.


Cerulli’s research is available in three formats that complement one other and are available across all of Cerulli’s practice areas.

During the research process, editors and our senior staff guide where research belongs, and ensure that formats are consistent with what our clients need most.

Client Services

Cerulli clients have access to our research in multiple formats: PDF, Excel, and via Lodestar — our interactive data platform. Our client login service includes a robust search-by-topic function. This allows users to easily locate content within research already owned by their firm, as well as research they may want to purchase. Users can also search content from initiatives they or others in their firm have participated in. Dedicated account managers help our clients navigate our research to find the best fit for their firm. In-person meetings with our clients throughout the year ensure their satisfaction and help them understand upcoming research initiatives. Account managers also help our clients package their research purchases for optimal pricing, including providing access to many complimentary benefits. Upon purchase of our research, account managers are available to support the content and to provide access to our research analysts as necessary.