Trade Associations are funded and founded by businesses from a particular sector to organise networking, representation, PR, lobbying and advertising activities. Professional institutes are usually not-for-profit bodies that represent the interests of a sector.
These organisations often have information services, which you can phone up to ask for statistics, market data or other information. However, they will generally charge you if you need more of their time than just speaking on the phone. You can also ask them for advice on how to do your research, or for pointers to good websites, directories, journals and libraries.
The following publications and websites can help you find the trade association or professional institute for the industry you’re tracking:
International directories are inevitably less comprehensive, but try:
ENCYCLOPAEDIA OF ASSOCIATIONS
WORLD GUIDE TO TRADE ASSOCIATIONS
DIRECTORY OF EUROPEAN INDUSTRY AND TRADE ASSOCIATIONS
The Wikipedia website has a list of international professional associations.
Two paywalled corporate online databases – EBSCO Business Source Corporate Plus and Nexis – provide access to thousands of trade journals and other information sources. EBSCO offers a free trial and it is possible to access Nexis with some Athens academic accounts.
TRADE JOURNALS AND MAGAZINES
The best bit of trade journals tends to be the news section, though there may occasionally be some informative feature articles. It may be worth flicking through the last year or two’s back issues. Trade journals often have an index in the first issue of the year, covering the previous year, or one is inserted when old editions are bound.
There is a huge range of trade journals and magazines, in a huge variety of industries. Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory is a good place to start. First published in 1932 and founded by the chief of the periodicals division of the New York Public Library, it is kept in the reference section of some libraries and is also available online. The full directory is paywalled but a free trial period is offered.
Call the London-based Periodical Publishers’ Association or the relevant trade or professional association for the industry you’re interested in and ask what they recommend. The media section of the Guardian newspaper’s website also has a page on trade magazines. Some of the bigger trade journals are listed below. All are in print and their websites are paywalled, unless specified otherwise.
Publications and websites on food and drink, including hospitality, meat, grocery and alcohol industries, plus cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. Organises expos, award ceremonies and events. Runs some free listings.
British company which sells databases of information on various sectors including the pharmaceutical industry, healthcare, telecoms and media as well as publishing books and journals. Owns Taylor and Francism which includes the publishing imprints of Routledge. Organises a range of corporate events including the Monaco Yacht Show and the Adam Smith Conferences.