by DINA MEHTA & STUART HENSHALL, Convo
Ethnographic context helps people see alternate possibilities and situations where decisions may play out—and create better futures.
The future, of course, is inherently unpredictable. As the EPIC2021 theme Anticipation begins, “There are no future facts. Yet we humans constantly create potential futures.”
People create futures when they begin to see alternate possibilities and situations where their decisions—and those of others—may play out. This creates choices and potential options, while also identifying risks, implications of operating in a different world, and new areas for research and exploration. To do this, organizations need to be able to learn about the world “out there,” as well as understand and shift their own positioning within it.
How can ethnographers facilitate this quest to anticipate the future? Our work has focused on the organizational change needed for our clients to see and create new potentials. As ethnographers we bring stories into the organization,...
An EPIC Talk with:
NIKHITA GHUGARI (Xeno Co-Lab, India)
ROBERTO HOLGUIN (Fjord/Accenture, Mexico)
TRULS ERIK JOHNSEN (EGGS Design, Norway)
YUEBAI LIU (ri studio, UK)
MOOWA MASANI (REACH Insights, South Africa)
DINA MEHTA (Convo, India)
SWAR RAISINGHANI (Xeno Co-Lab, India)
Thursday, August 20, 2020
8:00–9:30am San Francisco / 10am Mexico City / 4pm London / 5pm Cape Town / 8:30pm Mumbai
*Join 15 minutes early for informal intros & chatter with EPIC members & staff!
This online event is free for EPIC Members
Culture and commerce are transnational and dynamic, but in many ways, corporations and organizations of all kinds still rely on a static map of the world. Traditional borders and metrics are used to create market segmentations, product and service offerings, organizational hierarchies, strategic plans, and daily work practices.
This panel will tackle world regions conceptually and tactically, exploring the ways regional orientations help and hinder ethnographic work to create value for...
by APARNA RAY, DINA MEHTA & STUART HENSHALL, Convo
We find our clients constantly look for deeper meaning and nuanced user insights to help them innovate, stay ahead and rise to the challenges of business. At the same time, cross-functional teams within the organization want research to throw light on their focal paths. Add to this the ever-increasing role of technology and digitization in the lives of users, real-time play and social media engagement, and you have a heady mix that calls for new approaches and tools for ethnographic research.
“The relations between social life and its analysis are changing in the context of digitization… the means by which social life is performed and the devices through which it is recorded, observed and interpreted are increasingly the same or similar. Among many other things, this makes possible different ways of deploying social technologies in social and cultural research.” (Noortje Marres, What is Digital Sociology? CISP Online, 21 January 2013)
Over the last few years, we...
by STUART HENSHALL & DINA MEHTA – Convo
How can we move from observation to co-creation? Or, from observer to co-conspirator and change agent? This post shares part of a project design that took that journey.
It was Friday in Tokyo. We had been there just six days and this was the second country in thirteen. It was Friday, almost 1:00pm and the Co-creation Workshop with 18 young mums, our clients (8 attending) translators (4) and ourselves (3) was about to begin. We were in a large room. A part had been screened off earlier for “baby care”. The majority of the room was filled with three large stations (large round tables and rolling whiteboards and a large U for 18 people with whiteboard and instructions up the front.
Planning: We’d planned the Co-creation Workshop to follow a series of days immersed in-home. We ran a prototype workshop that morning with the local moderation team and translators. After four hours they remained skeptical and not 100% confident about the instructions. We apparently were about to break...
ALEXANDRA MACK and DINA MEHTA
As more and more corporate ethnographic work is crossing international borders, we are increasingly collaborating with teams that are spread across the globe. As a result, we need tools that enable us to work across boundaries. Since early 2004, the authors have been collaborating on a research project developed by an American company seeking to develop solutions specific to the Indian market. One of us, an Indian sociologist, led a team of ethnographers in India, while the other, an American anthropologist, managed research and analysis for concept development in the US. While all of the US-based team members spent time in the field in India during the project, integrating the teams into the same “brainspace” was a challenge. This paper describes how we used social tools to enable each set of team members to understand the work being done on the other side of the world....