Visual Ethnography

Topics: Ethnography, Design, User experience Pages: 10 (2079 words) Published: January 31, 2013
Visual Ethnograpy in User Studies and Product and Service Development


* Differences between customer and user studies
* User studies and visual ethnography
* User study processes
* Preparation
* Gathering information
* Joint interpretation and analysis
* Presenting information in a clear format
* Utilisation of information
* User studies and user-centred design
* Research ethics
* Assignment

Objective of the module

* Promoting user-centred product development
* Demonstrating research results

User studies and user experience as starting points for product development

* Conventional market research is inadequate in ensuring consumer satisfaction relating to product development * The product must be appropriate for its purpose and context of use, attractive, emotionally appealing and pleasant to use (positive and luxurious, comprehensive user experience) * Product development needs to be supported by user information; user habits, needs, values and wishes, the context and situation of product use as well as personal experiences in user and product interaction. * The preferences of users depend e.g. on culture, fashion and habits. * Measuring user satisfaction and experience is inadequate solely through user surveys, interviews or test groups at different design stages. * Observing authentic situations of use and data analysis are able to chart out user reactions and responses.

User information is more than market and customer information. (Hyysalo 2006)

Typical sources, strengths and weaknesses of user, customer and market information. (Hyysalo 2006)

Situation of use, i.e. context
* Situation of the product's actual use
* Several factors involved
* Users
* Objectives
* Tasks
* Equipment
* Physical environment of use
* Social environment of use

Do, Say, Make

Perspectives for product use and context include:
* Do (Do and use), based on observation.
* The perspective of market research, on the other hand, is (SAY) what people say and think. * The target of new objects and services must be (Make) the way in which people conjure up the world for themselves in their dreams, their imagination and range of thoughts. * People are seen as creative issuers of meaning, and not knowing the end result of the research serves as a starting point (source material-based approach). * Interpretative methods and approaches that support a common understanding are required.

Use of visual ethnography

* Studies use and user experiences
* Services
* Products
* Testing product and service concepts
* Researching and developing activities
* Starting point for user-centred design
* Evaluating space

Methods and tools

How to attain the deeper levels of user experience. Suitable methods and tools for user studies include: * Emotional tools, which are visual, playful, narrative techniques that create perceptions, dreams, fears and inspiration. -> Innovation * Cognitive tools, such as images, diagrams, maps, models, concept diagrams and flow diagrams, which focus thoughts and foster dialogue -> Structuring information * Cooperative tools, which foster a shared view, such as mind mapping, smart board, prototypes, ect. -> shared view and illustration

Ethnographic research

* The ethnographic approach seeks to describe the views, conceptions and interpretations of people in different operating cultures. The aim is to create a comprehensive view on e.g. the lifestyle of a certain group. * The target group of the examination is studied from within, with the aim of uncovering its multilayered objectives. Research object as the starting point! (Instead of the researcher's view) * Ethnography is usually seen as a long-term familiarisation with the...
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