Guiding principles

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Key Questions

Here are some key questions about our Guiding Principles on Independence and Objectivity.

Protecting the Gartner Brand

The management, analysts and consultants of Gartner Research and Gartner Consulting independently establish research methodologies, monitor content quality, and set publishing agendas, free of external influence or interference. Gartner maintains a Code of Conduct that describes our core values and the boundaries that Gartner associates who develop and publish research or deliver consulting products are required to observe. Much of that guidance is reflected in this document.

Gartner positions are developed through a collaborative process by the research teams that cover particular topics. Each piece of Gartner research is subject to a rigorous peer-review process by members of the worldwide analyst community, and review by Research management is required prior to publication. This process is designed to surface any inconsistencies in research methodology, data collection and conclusions, as well as to fully use Gartner collective expertise on any research topic. Review our research methodologies in more detail at Research Methodologies.

As part of their onboarding, our research analysts receive in-person training about the importance of maintaining the confidentiality of client information. This content is reinforced in several ways each year, including through our annual mandatory confidentiality course for all client-facing research associates and through our annual mandatory Code of Conduct affirmation. All confidentiality guidelines are documented in an internal policy document that resides on Gartner’s intranet; this document is updated periodically, as appropriate. Finally, the obligation to maintain confidentiality is reiterated in several policy documents and also posted on our intranet, with policies including the Agreement Regarding Certain Conditions of Employment, Global Code of Conduct, Insider Trading Policy, and others.

No. Research analysts are not allowed to own stock or have any other type of personal investment in companies or sectors they cover, nor are their managers. Members of Gartner executive operating committee are prohibited from owning stock in any technology company. Gartner research analysts, Gartner executives and other Gartner associates are not permitted to be board members of any company in the IT industry that is within the scope of Gartner research coverage.

No. Gartner research is produced independently by Gartner analysts without the influence, review or approval of our investors, shareholders or directors.

Gartner associates may not accept gratuitous payments, services, gifts or entertainment from any former, current or potential client or supplier, except gifts and entertainment of nominal value only such as business lunches, flowers or advertising novelties, provided that the same are customarily offered to others having a similar relationship with such client or supplier. For research analysts and management, this specifically includes gifts from any information technology or service provider and includes activities such as golf outings, sporting event tickets, and the like.

Similarly, associates may not offer gratuitous payments, services, gifts or entertainment, except gifts and entertainment of nominal value that are customarily offered to others having a similar relationship with Gartner, to clients, prospective clients, suppliers or any other person/entity directly or indirectly related to the business of Gartner.

Vendor Issues

No. Research analysts cover vendors that, based on the analysts’ judgment, are significant players in the markets Gartner covers. A vendor’s status as a Gartner client or non-client is not a factor in this decision.

Vendors communicate information about their products and services to research analysts through meetings with analysts known as “vendor briefings.” Vendors that request vendor briefings typically are seeking coverage by research analysts of their specific products and services. Gartner manages the vendor briefing process to match specific technology companies with the most appropriate research analysts, as well as to ensure that a specific vendor’s scale and scope are appropriate for Gartner research studies. Vendors may obtain access to research analysts through vendor briefings or other mutually agreed contacts, regardless of whether or not they are Gartner clients.

Vendors are sometimes permitted to review research prior to publication to assure that it is factually accurate in its description of the vendors’ products or services. The length of time for this review varies from four hours to one week, based on the length of the research study. Also, an enterprise user that is the subject of a case study typically is permitted to review that research before it is published.

Gartner maintains a formal process for interacting with anyone who questions the fairness or accuracy of any program. Members of the Gartner Ombuds' Office thoroughly investigate all such claims. The Office of the Ombuds reports to the General Counsel of Gartner to retain its independence from business units. To contact the Office of the Ombuds, please call or e-mail Review our escalation guidelines for technology and service providers at Vendor Research Escalation Process.

All Gartner research is copyrighted and subject to the Gartner Content Compliance Policy. Any external use of quotes or excerpts from Gartner research must be approved in advance by Gartner Quote Requests (contact Gartner research may not be used to endorse a technology company, product or service, or to criticize a vendor’s competitor. All quotes and excerpts must be taken from published research that is less than 12 months old, or otherwise marked by Gartner as “Gartner Foundational” and may not contain company-specific references. In addition, enterprises may purchase the right to share published Gartner Research via the Gartner Custom Newsletter or Reprints programs (to contact, call or e-mail Review our policies on quote use in more detail at Copyright and Quote Policy.

No. Influence over research content or the amount of research coverage focused on any vendor, sector or topic is not, and has never been, for sale by Gartner. Vendors purchase Gartner services to obtain knowledge and market insights they cannot obtain elsewhere. In addition, they purchase exhibit space at Gartner conferences to reach highly qualified audiences they cannot reach through other channels.

No. Just as any company, Gartner procures products and services it needs to run its business. However, those procurement decisions are not an endorsement of the technology solution providers in any way. Strong measures are taken to ensure Gartner does not appear to endorse any provider, or its products or services. For example, you won’t see the Gartner logo on the provider’s website or Gartner acting as a reference.

Consulting Engagements

Gartner may be engaged by a technology provider to assess and interpret either a market segment or services provided by that company to a specific customer or group of customers. These studies are completed using standard Gartner assessment tools, methodologies or data-gathering techniques, and include interpretation of the results by Gartner. These studies are conducted by the Gartner Consulting business unit.

Gartner neither uses nor incorporates the results of individual client-commissioned studies for publication in our subscription research services.

Clients are not allowed to share client-commissioned consulting study results outside of their own organizations. However, studies performed for a government client that is subject to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) may be released as required, with restrictions as specified by the FOIA.

No. Gartner performs no technology implementation for clients whatsoever. Gartner takes research positions on which technologies and services will succeed or fail, but we have no intrinsic interest in seeing one solution succeed over another.