What if design was about making stuff and taking people's views into consideration and mayeb even making stuff with them (co-design) and anthropology was concerned with the question of what is culture and how is it done etc., and there was no useful or necesssray connection between them at all!
If you're prepared for the intellectual challenge Lucy Suchman will tell you why technology design is a problematic object for anthropology
"Though design has been considered recently as a model for anthropology's future, I argue instead that it is best positioned as a problematic object for an anthropology of the contemporary. In writing about design's limits, my argument is that, like anthropology, design needs to acknowledge the specificities of its place, to locate itself as one (albeit multiple) figure and practice of transformation."
Authoritative Introduction to Ethnography and how it is used to design digital products...
gavin melles's insight:
Dave Randall's overview is a great introduction
In ethnomethodologically informed ethnographic research on work, the understanding of any work setting is derived from the study of that setting itself, rather than from any highly structured model or theory of work organisation or work processes; that is, it ties itself closely to the observed data, it is 'data-driven'. A central precept of ethnomethodological ethnography is to aim to find the orderliness of ordinary activities, an orderliness accomplished by social actors, unreflectively taken-for-granted by them and constructed with their common-sense knowledge of social order.
Ethnographic approaches associated with social and cultural anthropology are common currency in systems design. They are employed in academic and industrial research labs, consultancy firms, IT companies and design houses to ...
gavin melles's insight:
Currently my favourite text focussed on technology innovation an combining ethnomethodological 'practical socioogy' with contextual ethnographic understanding
Editor's note: In this post for our Being a student ethnographer series, I talked to Christine Hine about her forthcoming book, 'Ethnography for the Internet: Embedded, Embodied and Everyday' due out next year.
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