Shobha Prasad, director Drshti Strategic Research Services, received the Best Paper award at the ESOMAR Qualitative Research Conference 2010 at Barcelona, Spain. Her paper titled “Why some slumdogs feel like millionaires and some millionaires like slumdogs” explores multiple poverty lines and offers insights in to the Indian culture.

The paper talks about how one’s perception of affluence influences behaviour and aspiration which may not commensurate with the traditional measures of poverty. The paper is an interesting exploration of how different social classes perceive themselves in Indian society. As well as providing some key insights into Indian culture, Shobha Prasad also identified the main implications for branding, positioning and advertising. The quote from John Stuart Mill on her final slide summed it up beautifully, and perhaps provided a timely reminder for us all: “I have learnt to seek my happiness by limiting my desires rather than in attempting to satisfy them”.

Based on ten years of qualitative research in the area and substantiated with In Depth interviews, it offers interesting insights in to the Indian Consumers’ psyche.

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