Anthropology and design


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From the anthropological perspective, the user does not exist. “The User” has been a category used by sciences and industries to name the relationship between people and digital interfaces.

However, more than fifteen years of “user experience research” have demonstrated the need for applying a broader approach when an understanding of human behaviour is required in technological and business innovation processes. In this scenario, Applied Anthropology brings a useful perspective for managing the complexities of global markets and large groups of stakeholders.

Maritza Guaderrama (PhD) wants to point out the advantages of anthropological gaze: questioning the traditional design process and introducing the importance of taking into account the sense-making as a central human activity.

Thus, the user experience research, boosted by social science contribution, becomes more than a set of exploratory methods or a group of techniques for getting customer data in a validation stage for business design. The anthropological approach provides framework and tools that allows multidisciplinary team to access to a powerful source of inspiration thus by the immersion in people realities as by self-distance from their pre-concepts and prejudices.

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  • Pese a que se ha puesto de moda el maridaje entre la antropología y el diseño (ejemplo variados en D Research, Anthrodesign, Human centered…) tengo que decir que se trata de una pareja muy complicada, porque originariamente tienen sentidos opuestos…
  • Anthropology and design

    1. 1. UXSpain ANTHROPOLOGY & DESIGN: What can we learn from a 19th-century science? Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    2. 2. Opposite approaches? Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    3. 3. “The purpose of anthropology is to make the world safe for human differences” Ruth Benedict (1887-1948) Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    4. 4. The disciplines linked to UX have a “universalizing” sense: Transform through design the relationship with interfaces into something… Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    5. 5. UXSpain 2014 Maritza Guaderrama, PhD simple,
    6. 6. Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014 simple, useful,
    7. 7. Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014 simple, useful, funny,
    8. 8. simple, useful, funny, even emotionally exciting :P Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    9. 9. What can the contribution be of a science that seeks to explain human differences to the universalizing claim of “user-centered” design?
    10. 10. Problems, only problems… Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    11. 11. Questioning the concept of user Structural sampling Stakeholders map IT-team involvement Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    12. 12. Questioning creativity as exclusive to the design process Co-creation Translation Prototyping Redesign Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    13. 13. Questioning the concept of Experience design Interpretation and appropriation Ecosystems Continuity of the experience Onmichannel Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    14. 14. Inspiration Immersion Self- distance (estrangement) Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014 Questioning the concept of research
    15. 15. In conclusion Challenges of human-centered design Maritza Guaderrama, PhDUXSpain 2014
    16. 16. Naïve vision of the designer as provider of solutions Maritza Guaderrama, PhD UXSpain 2014
    17. 17. The unpredictability of risks (and success) Maritza Guaderrama, PhD UXSpain 2014
    18. 18. Dealing with complexity Maritza Guaderrama, PhD UXSpain 2014
    19. 19. Maritza Guaderrama, PhD Managing Partner Spain & Latam +34 913 080 890 @garua Thanks Gracias Gràcies Danke Tak Takk Tack Obrigado ‫תודה‬ 谢谢