In Tokyo for EPIC – Ethnographic Praxis in Industry Conference. 6th edition. [Link]
How to improve the design of things –
- take people seriously – be human-centered
- look beyond the artifact – design systems, scenarios, stories, experiences, interactions
- don’t assume the designer knows it all – find out, pursue research and conduct fieldwork
Ethnography, anthropological fieldwork aimed at understanding a culture and society, offers a suite of research practices to achieve precisely these ends. Intel, among a growing number of companies, has invested heavily in this design research, contextual research, design anthropology, as it also gets called.
The theme this year is the nature of this ethnographic practice –
My line – if we are serious about human-centered we need to consider what we mean by “human”, and the Humanities are a good place to start doing just that.
As an archaeologist I naturally take a long term view, and one that sees things (artifacts, places, ecologies) as an integral part of being human – maybe human-centered isn’t quite what many people take it to be.