Student Edge’s Research Director, Toni Cundy, has been recognised for her exceptional contribution to the research industry by the Significant Insights Global 30 Under 30 List.
Leading Student Edge’s full-service market research arm YouthInsight, Toni has worked to share and understand the unique perspectives of Australia’s Gen Z demographic—a notoriously misunderstood group in brand marketing.
The Significant Insights Global 30 Under 30 List celebrates “the rising stars of the insights world” and reviews close to 100 nominations from 14 countries. We asked Toni what the huge honour meant to her.
“As a female under 30, like many young women in our industry and also across the working world, I think the majority of us are facing some sort of impostor syndrome.”Toni Cundy, Research Director.
“As a Research Director with around eight years of experience under my belt, every day I doubt myself a bit. I know I’m a very strong researcher, I have great skills and I really enjoy it as well—so it’s awesome to have been recognized. I can have this title forever,” Toni said.
Toni entered the world of research and insights when she applied for a market research internship while at university. She entered a competitive graduate scheme after completing her studies and earned experience in tech, government and social research.
Since then, Toni has worked at YouthSight in the UK before joining the research team at Student Edge.
She’s a huge champion of making research known as a career option to young people.
“A lot of people don’t know what (research) is and don’t see it as a career. The majority of people in the industry say they’ve fallen into it by accident.
“I want to get more students and graduates to be aiming for a career in insights. There’s so many questions to answer and brands need help with that—you can be the expert to help them answer those questions!”
With years of experience and various client projects under her belt, we asked Toni the one thing brands currently misunderstand most about Gen Z.
“My clients are always so surprised when they hear about usage of TikTok.”
“I think that a lot of older generations assume that all young people are on social media, which, yes, that is fairly true, but you can’t always assume that all young people are on TikTok.”
“There’s a lot of young people who have actively taken themselves off TikTok because it has negatively impacted their mental health, or they feel quite addicted to it.”
YouthInsight works with clients from the corporate, government and education sectors to understand these kind of perceptions, and ultimately see the world through the eyes of Australia’s youth.
One important topic in youth research is wellbeing and mental health in her youth research. Toni’s research in partnership with R U OK? has recently been published, outlining barriers to both asking for help and supporting others.
She is also currently working on the 2022-23 Student Wellbeing Survey in partnership with Studiosity, with results of the research to be published in 2023.
More information is available on the YouthInsight website, and you can contact Toni Cundy below.