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An agronomist’s unexpected         path to UX DesignEURO IA 27-29 Sept 2012, Rome   Raffaella Roviglioni @raffiro
Who am I?
Why this presentation?© Charles Budd
Which skills?
User research“User research, ethnography, is a state of mind that can infuse, inform and inspire    the design process and...
Field work!
Gathering stories
I had a dream
The daily interviews
Woman to womanBe aware of the cultural context       You need a helping hand
The script         The field guide is a plan!Help people answer your questions
It’s never overExplore outside main target      Be open to surprises
The evaporation panPeople don’t do what they say!
Italian elder farmers© Unitus                Embrace expectations           The setup is not up to you!
A real war story      Build rapport  Get the story out
Evaluating farmers   Limited timeframe           Obstacles
A quick fix      Improvise!Seize the moment
The journey to our passion“The Element is the place where the things welove to do and the things we are good at cometogeth...
My Element
“Never underestimate the vital importanceof finding early in life the work that for youis play”                 Ken Robins...
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An Agronomist's Unexpected Path to UX Design

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Is there a typical path for becoming a UX Designer? Taking a look at other colleagues’ resumes it seems not: some come from graphic design, others from cognitive psychology, information sciences or HCI - all UX-related fields. There are some exceptions though of people arriving here from more distant fields such as literature (Dick Hill), architecture (Andrea Resmini), history (Louis Rosenfeld) and theatre (Eric Reiss).
My personal path started from an even more distant field: I studied Agricultural Sciences and as strange as it might sound I now realize it was a solid ground for building up the skills required for the job I’m currently doing.
During the first years of my professional career I chose to undertake activities in the field that required me to interact quite intensively with people: I interviewed farmers in Africa and elderly people in my own country; I also ran focus groups with farmers, consumers and scientists for EU-funded projects. Although the focus of the research at the time was elsewhere, the lessons learned during those years were incredibly meaningful and useful for the user research I now perform as UX designer, even if at the time I wasn’t aware of the motivation that drove me and still does.
By telling the stories of the people I met I’d like to share with the Euro IA audience those experiences, how they helped me developing ethnographic and human skills (observation, interview, facilitation, improvisation, lateral thinking and empathy). Also, I’d like to share what I believe is the underlying theme that brought me from there to UX design: I love people. I love listening to them and designing for them to be happier.

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Transcript of "An Agronomist's Unexpected Path to UX Design"

  1. 1. An agronomist’s unexpected path to UX DesignEURO IA 27-29 Sept 2012, Rome Raffaella Roviglioni @raffiro
  2. 2. Who am I?
  3. 3. Why this presentation?© Charles Budd
  4. 4. Which skills?
  5. 5. User research“User research, ethnography, is a state of mind that can infuse, inform and inspire the design process and beyond” Will Evans (@SemanticWill)
  6. 6. Field work!
  7. 7. Gathering stories
  8. 8. I had a dream
  9. 9. The daily interviews
  10. 10. Woman to womanBe aware of the cultural context You need a helping hand
  11. 11. The script The field guide is a plan!Help people answer your questions
  12. 12. It’s never overExplore outside main target Be open to surprises
  13. 13. The evaporation panPeople don’t do what they say!
  14. 14. Italian elder farmers© Unitus Embrace expectations The setup is not up to you!
  15. 15. A real war story Build rapport Get the story out
  16. 16. Evaluating farmers Limited timeframe Obstacles
  17. 17. A quick fix Improvise!Seize the moment
  18. 18. The journey to our passion“The Element is the place where the things welove to do and the things we are good at cometogether” Ken Robinson
  19. 19. My Element
  20. 20. “Never underestimate the vital importanceof finding early in life the work that for youis play” Ken Robinson,“The Element: How finding your passion changes every thing” Thank you! raffaella@roviglioni.it @raffiroSpecial thanks to: Rome UX Book Club, for support and inspiration Steve Portigal, for his lessons and the war stories
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