Ethnozine: August Edition – the tools we use, ethnography of Occupy, EPIC12 preview, men peeing, & uprooting assumptions

As far as fieldwork tools go, hardly anything drives an ethnographer more crazy than trying to find the most appropriate fieldwork tools.  That is why we decided for the August issue of Ethnography Matters, we’d talk all about fieldwork tools and launch a new series called “The Tools we Use.”

Heather Ford starts us off with a discussion of the software she uses for her Wikipedia research, followed by Jenna Burrell’srecommendations for software she has tried and wants to try in the field. Rachelle Annechino suggests a few Android appsalong with colored markers and Tricia Wang tells us about her anxieties of not knowing which tools she’ll use for her analysis process.

“Tools we Use” is an ongoing series, so if you have a fieldwork process or an app review you’d like to contribute, please contact us!

Rachelle Annechino also offers another post this month on the fears and delights in using ethnography to research drug use. She reveals some assumptions around drug consumption. And she throws in Lady Gaga to her post!

This month we have a lot of exciting guest contributors. First up is John Payne from Moment in NYC, NY. Gasp! John is not a formally trained ethnographer, but he’s a designer who relies on ethnography and trains all his designers at Moment to use it. This month, in Teaching Ethnography For User Experience: A Workshop On Occupy Wall Street, John shares his process on a two and a half day training he held for a group of designers in NYC. The training aimed to improve communication for the participants of Occupy. John’s 3-part reflection shows us their entire process from research questions, observations, post-fieldwork analysis and to design solutions.

As the co-chair of EPIC 2012 (October 14-17), John gives us a preview of their upcoming conference in Renewing Ethnography: Exploring The Role of Applied Ethnography At EPIC 2012. Did you know that EPIC will have two amazing keynote speakers this year? John tells us about keynoters Emily Pilloton of Project H Design and Philip Delves Broughton, author of The Art of the Sale: Learning From the Masters about the Business of LifeIt’s not too late to register for EPIC.  And for those of use who can’t get to EPIC 20212, readers of Ethnography Matters can look forward to a special post-conference review of notes and highlights from EPIC panels and workshops.

Our next guest contribution is an incredibly beautiful and personal essay, Men Pee Standing Up: The value of an anthropological perspective. Anthropologist Robbie Blinkoff co-founded the global research group, Context-Based Research Group in Boston, USA, but he doesn’t talk about his industry work in his essay. Instead, Robbie shares with us his process of discovering his anthropologist identity and how it helps him see the world.

Journalist and researcher, Luisa Beck closes out our great guest contributor line up with a post on the joy of having one’s assumptions turned upside down. She shows us that good ethnographic inspiration comes in all forms, from blog posts to talks. 

NEXT MONTH

  • Gabriella Coleman will share with us her process for conducting ethnography on Anonymous.
  • Mike Gotta will tell us about ethnography and enterprise software.
  • John Payne will tell us about the history of EPIC.

TIDBITS

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Would you like to be our next guest contributor? Ethnography Matters is your space. You can feature a project/paper/book/syllabus,  provide a fieldwork update, or share your thoughts.  Here are some more ideas for how you can participate. We’d love to hear from you.  Email us!

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Categories: Ethnozine

Author:tricia wang

I research how technology makes us human. As a cultural sociologist, I use a range of ethnographic methods to create socially relevant insights about how people use digital tools in their day to day lives. I write about digital culture at Culturalbyt.es, China tech at BytesofChina.com, and cities at DigitalUrbanis.ms. Follow me on twitter @triciawang.

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