Ethnography: a new form of research?

Thomas Vanderwal pointed me to, “Bus ride to the future“, a BBC article about some research Intel is doing in London.

The funny thing to me was this line: “Ms Bell is part of a group of psychologists, anthropologists and social scientists working for Intel on a new form of industry research called ethnography.”

Obviously, there’s nothing new about ethnography, though the idea of Intel doing ethnographic research may be.

I’m posting this as a reminder that we still have a long way to go before the idea of research for design becomes common knowledge.

4 thoughts on “Ethnography: a new form of research?”

  1. If it’s not seen as “new,” they won’t write about it. I’d rather have them make errors like that, and give more press to what we do. The more awareness there is (and I know, this is your point as well), the easier it will be to make contributions of this form.

    Steve

  2. By the way, Intel has been doing ethnography and actively promoting the usage of it for quite a while. They had the first CHI papers I had ever seen about this sort of research. I can’t think of other corporations that are as far ahead as they are. I gather that it’s a bit of a show pony for the company and they don’t necessarily feed their results into product as often as some would like (this is IMHO, of course), but as far as advancing the field, I give them big-time credit.

  3. By the way, Intel has been doing ethnography and actively promoting the usage of it for quite a while. They had the first CHI papers I had ever seen about this sort of research. I can’t think of other corporations that are as far ahead as they are. I gather that it’s a bit of a show pony for the company and they don’t necessarily feed their results into product as often as some would like (this is IMHO, of course), but as far as advancing the field, I give them big-time credit.

Comments are closed.