The Medium is the Message: A Lesson in Engaging Stakeholders in the UX Research Process

From designers and information architects to researchers and strategists, user experience practitioners must pay attention to the methods by which they communicate their ideas. As Marshall McLuhan first pointed out in 1964, the medium by which information is conveyed affects how the information, or message, is perceived by the audience. This is especially important for … Continue reading The Medium is the Message: A Lesson in Engaging Stakeholders in the UX Research Process

Anthropologists in Practice: An Interview with Liz Riedman, User Experience Research Assistant at ITHAKA/JSTOR

Anthropologists in Practice is an ongoing series of interviews featuring practicing anthropologists who work outside the academy. The goal of the series is to provide a source of information and inspiration to anyone who is interested in the application of anthropology in the real world, including anthropologists, anthropology students, prospective anthropology students, employers, policymakers and … Continue reading Anthropologists in Practice: An Interview with Liz Riedman, User Experience Research Assistant at ITHAKA/JSTOR

Getting at the Heart of Consumer Understanding: Cheap, Fast and Tactical Isn’t the Answer

As researchers in business, how do we balance insightfulness, depth of thought and rigor with the demands and pace of business decision making? Anthropologist Gavin Johnston shares his thoughts below.

anthrostrategist

Sitting in a meeting not long ago, I couldn’t help overhearing someone comment that the presentation of the rationale for a campaign they had just sat through was too “academic”.  What struck me was the distinction he made between academics and “real businessmen” like himself.  The word “academic” is, of course, loaded but one of the underlying meanings to so many would-be paragons of business is that “academic” means complicated, useless or detached.  Now, while I would be the first to agree that people with an “academic” bent to their work can be prone to laying the jargon on fairly thick at times or wanting to give details that some people might feel aren’t needed, the ones that gain recognition and traction in their field and across disciplines (including business) are anything but detached or lacking in their ability to articulate game-changing product and business solutions.  The practical and the…

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Anthropologists in Practice: An Interview with Paul Klipp, Design Anthropologist and Business Consultant

Anthropologists in Practice is an ongoing series of interviews featuring anthropologists (and professionals with anthropology training) who work outside of the academy. The goal of the series is to provide a source of information and inspiration to other practitioners and (potential) students of anthropology, and to illustrate the wide variety of jobs, skills and competencies … Continue reading Anthropologists in Practice: An Interview with Paul Klipp, Design Anthropologist and Business Consultant