The world is increasingly complex. Selbey Labs helps make sense of it with practical, useful and effective strategies to adapt, evolve and thrive.

We bring together research, foresight, innovation and consulting to inform future brand and business strategies, create or evolve products and services and crucially understand the audiences you serve and those you'd like to serve. Our aim in everything we do is to ensure we help our clients remain resilient and successful. Using a dynamic blend of data, behavioural science and research, Selbey Labs delivers a deep identification and understanding of emerging opportunities and threats, giving clients more time to prepare and/or react.

Ultimately, our goal is to bring clarity to inform future strategies, campaigns, products and services, ensuring that our clients remain resilient and successful.

We regularly publish reports and research as well as hosting events that focus on macro-trends, key socio-economic drivers, sector-trends, audience trends and wider cultural shifts.

Our approach is always to help our clients make sense of emerging trends and gain useful, relevant and actionable insights and ideas that can drive growth and value.



We utilise our skills in ethnographic research, qualitative research, in-depth interviews, desk research and competitor set reviews to inform brand development, future growth strategies, new market entry and much more.

We also specialise in voice of customer (VOC) research for complex b2b brands operating across myriad sectors and have demonstrated the value it delivers to many clients.

Our team has more than 20 years of experience across key industry sectors working for both fast-growth and global brands and businesses.

Recently, we conducted internal staff & customer research for a global brand, alongside positioning activity linked to emerging issues in automation which now underpin a new go-to-market strategy.

We both carry out research directly and project manage complex and on-going research assignments via our trusted partners.

Strategic Foresight

For this type of ‘Now/Next/Why’ activity, we make strategic recommendations in response to key cultural, social and business challenges.

The catalysts are often linked to developments in technology, demographics, climate, governance and globalisation, etc. Overall, we focus on the business implications of potential change.

We recently began work on the classic viewpoints of ‘Growth / Constriction / Collapse / Innovation’ as core scenario-routes potentially impacting a client and this work has, in turn, triggered a new five-year business plan.

This work is carried out by our Foresight team who have many years experience working across a range of sectors and is supported by our multi-disciplinary faculty with expertise across branding, culture, technology and geopolitical risk.


Our team have conducted concept research, development and testing for a wide range of leading brands across multiple sectors, along with agencies across the mix.

Our work is highly varied, ranging from board-level to street-level activity. This is our preferred way of working, as it enables us to combine ‘cultural/social reality’ alongside testing/developing brand concepts.

A recent example focused on business travel; one of the organizational areas most impacted by the ongoing effects of Covid.


Our advisory services include applied thought leadership, a new approach to senior-level communication and brand storytelling, proposition and business model reviews and transformation and brand and product positioning and strategy - everything from commercial frameworks to semiotics. Our core team and wider faculty has advised a wide range of blue chip clients as well as working closely with private equity and privately held, fast-growth businesses.

Guided Fieldwork and Safaris

We often organise guided fieldwork for our clients, helping them to understand the world from a different perspective, spending time outside of the office and meeting stakeholders, inspirational thinkers and makers and a host of others. These Safaris have often led to breakthrough thinking for teams and brands.

Reports, Events and Workshops

Business leaders have always had to anticipate and embrace change, but today, change is happening across a wider range of areas and accelerating as never before. In the past decade the c-suite has had to navigate a global credit crunch, sovereign debt crises, Brexit, a Pandemic, War in Europe, surging inflation, supply chain shocks, East-West power shifts, rapid automation, talent shortages, climate crisis and demographic shocks to name a few.

New challenges, call for new thinking. To stay ahead and stay resilient, leaders need to know more about what’s coming and better predict the likely outcome of their actions.

To help our clients engage with emerging threats and opportunities, we regularly publish reports, whitepapers, articles and research across key topics and sectors. We also host webinars, workshops and events to unpack our latest research or new insight in conjunction with Selbey Anderson agencies and our Faculty.



Following a successful career in communications, including co-founding award-winning agency Unity (now part of the Selbey Anderson Group), Gerry set up Selbey Labs in April 2022. Through his work at Unity over the past two decades he has developed a perspective on the role of brands in culture, the importance of observation and benefits of testing and learning.


Sean is a strategist, author and speaker. Fascinated by the catalysts of social & cultural change, he has a deep level of knowledge re: ‘Now/Next/Why’. As a public speaker, he focuses on trust (re: his book The Post-Truth Business) and/or innovation (re: his book Influencers & Revolutionaries). His talks also link to his podcast #TheNewAbnormal.


Helen has worked both agency and client-side in trend forecasting and qualitative research roles, bringing her extensive knowledge of consumer attitudes/behaviour and product/service innovation, across numerous sectors and territories. Her attention to detail is born out of a passion and strong background in visual research and product development.


Carsten has been working with trend analysis and scenario processes at The Copenhagen Institute for Futures Studies (CIFS) for more than 30 years, in more than 30 countries. The themes Carsten has been working with all relate to how trends shape the future for organisations, companies, and societies. Carsten has done scenario processes in retail, HR, finance, business-to-business, governments and NGOs. His key priority is how to drive processes that enable clients to prepare for the future. These clients include organisations in global retail, governments, industrial conglomerates, cultural organisations, rock festivals, tourist organisations, the transport industry, IT and more.


Dr Elizabeth Stephens is an investment and country risk advisor and Managing Director of Geopolitical Risk Advisory, a geopolitical tech company. Elizabeth works with commercial and philanthropic clients in the development of corporate strategy and planning across a range of sectors and geographies, to effectively manage and mitigate risk. Her specialist knowledge encompasses the drivers of geopolitics change, including cryptocurrencies, the decentralisation of financial institutions and the geopolitics of decarbonisation.


Dr Rachel Lawes is a futurist, a social psychologist and one of the original founders of British commercial semiotics. She supplies brand and marketing strategy to businesses such as Unilever, P&G, Kraft, Nike and Diageo, as well as clients in specialised sectors such as pharmaceuticals and finance. A regular international conference speaker, she is the author of two landmark books; "Using Semiotics in Marketing" (2020) and "Using Semiotics in Retail" (2022), both published by Kogan Page. Based in London, UK, she is a Fellow of the Market Research Society. Her company, Lawes Consulting Ltd, marks its 20th anniversary in 2022.


Georgina Lee combines expertise in design, innovation and ageing. She believes cross-generational innovation is central to social and economic impact. Following a highly successful career in design, where she co-founded the ground-breaking design studio This Is Real Art, she has been leading thought and action in the areas of age bias, age diversity and the development of future strategies, products and services to enable us all to live longer, healthier and happier lives. She sits on the BSI working group looking into age inclusive standards, the ISO working group on inter-generational workforces and is a Trustee of the Do It Foundation, a social enterprise whose technology helps people to do good and feel healthier and happier.


Following a successful career in advertising (creative and media), which included building the digital operations of the some of the world’s largest agencies, including Saatchi and Saatchi, Grey Advertising and McCann, Alan held the position as Chairman of the IPA Digital Committee for three years where his white paper ‘How The West Was Won’ was instrumental in brokering the model for trading digital media between advertising, publishers, and agencies. A model that is still in place today. After a period building offshore creative delivery as Chief Digital Officer for Ninestars and 2adpro in India, he returned to the UK as ESET’s Marketing Director. Alan joined Orckid in 2022 and is focussed on guiding and advising clients on digital business transformation.


James is a highly experienced strategist, advisor & NED for rapidly-scaling businesses. His experience includes leadership roles in product, service, people, brand and marketing. He bridges strategy and execution as well as culture and commercial thinking. For more than a decade, James has been aligning people behind a clear vision and differentiated position in the market. He founded and exited a challenger creative agency and has worked with category-defining brands including LEON, Gozney and Soho House.


Chiedza is a trained Anthropologist, who is highly skilled in ethnographic and qualitative research and human insights. She has extensive experience working with B2B brands and businesses, helping them identify new customers and markets through her analyses of human behaviour and data. Chiedza is passionate about filling in the gaps in marketing by explaining (to whoever will listen) why humans act the way they do and what influences their buying decisions.


Claire is Head of Anthropology at Selbey Anderson Partner Network agency Demographica and has worked in advertising and market research throughout her career. With expertise in numerous sectors, She specialises in ethnographic and immersive qualitative research and human insights. She holds her Honours in Anthropology from the University of Cape Town and her Masters in Organisational and Business Psychology from the University of Liverpool.She is passionate about using human insights to tell more compelling, authentic stories. Claire is a bibliophile and lives in Johannesburg, South Africa with her partner and too many plants.


Sophy has an impressive track record in PR and communications and most recently was MD of Selbey Anderson agency Unity. Across her career she has worked with some of the world's best brands including Eurotunnel, Amadeus, AT&T, Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, Global Recycling Day, trivago and Her focus is on strategic and creative planning, and she brings excitement, innovation and rigour to the award winning campaigns she works on. Now, as Group Client Director for Selbey Anderson, Sophy will be taking a strategic and client-first approach to the expanding Group portfolio and opportunities.



Dr Jillian Ney is a digital anthropologist, entrepreneur, author, and keynote speaker who specialises in the analysis of Internet culture. She’s also known as the UK’s first “Dr. of Social Media.” Jillian has spent her career examining how technology is changing people’s behaviour online and offline, and creating methodologies to help businesses uncover the hidden triggers driving human behaviour at scale. Jillian is also the founder of a global community for professional social and internet data analysts - The Social Intelligence Lab - that is working to advance the value of Internet data as a source of insight. This community has grown rapidly since it launch, bringing together professionals from over 40 countries to learn, network, and share new ideas. As part of this she has worked with some of the world’s biggest companies, including Mondelez International, The HENIKEN Company, Warner Brothers, The Coca-Cola Company, and Puig. Jillian’s first co-authored book, Advanced Marketing Management (Kogan Page) is an update to traditional marketing paradigm through data and neuro-marketing. She is a sought-out speaker and commentator on internet culture and social listening and has presented her work at SXSW, PR Week, Festival or Marketing, Social Media Week, IIEX, and NATO. Jillian’s a two time TEDx’er and has been featured in Forbes, Business Insider, Glamour Magazine, and Cosmopolitan.



Huw is a recognized leader in global digital transformation, data science and measurement delivery. He specialises in 1st party data and maximizing its strategic use within organisations. In the past 30+ years his career has taken him from the actuarial department of BUPA Health Insurance to a range of agencies and consultancies, including Ogilvy, Havas and most recently J Walter Thompson in APAC. He has worked with a range of major brands across the globe and spent nearly seventeen years in APAC building up analytic and insight teams for major corporates. He now splits his time between clients in Asia and Europe. As an educationalist, he spends part of his time lecturing at a range of educational institutions and at present he is the Visiting Industrial lecturer for the French University INSEEC at their London Campus, providing tutoring on machine learning and analytics for the MA in Digital Marketing Strategy and Branding. Huw is a key lecturer on the UK IDM Direct Marketing Diploma course and a regular global conference speaker. Along with his Honorary Life Fellowship, Huw was named the IDM’s Educator of the Year in 2004 In 2013 he was awarded Data Professional of the Year by his peers at the Data Strategy Awards in Europe.

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Coming soon from Labs

'Making sense of...' reports

We’re publishing a series of reports under the title ‘Making Sense of…’ which are intended to act as an introduction to our thinking and approach. The first report looked into Innovation and Catalytic Thinkers and can be viewed here, whilst the second will focus on Trust, Truth and Authenticity.


Later this year, we will be launching a new pulse check offering which will provide clients with a rapid deep-dive understanding of niche audience needs, hopes, desires and attitudes with rich ethnographic and cartographic outputs and actionable insights.


We shall soon be launching our very own Selbey Labs podcast exploring emerging threats and opportunities for complex and fast forward brands.


If you would like to receive our 'Signal Strength' newsletter and hear about upcoming events, please click HERE and we will add you to our mailing list.

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