- Series: Anthropology & Business
- Paperback: 140 pages
- Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (December 13, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1629581194
- ISBN-13: 978-1629581194
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #927,518 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Ethnographic Thinking: From Method to Mindset (Anthropology & Business) 1st Edition
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“This is an extremely valuable book for beginning students of ethnography, graduate students in cultural anthropology and sociology, and practitioners who apply ethnography to real-world issues and commercial ventures. Through closely reported, finely-crafted, wide-ranging, and richly illustrative cases, Jay Hasbrouck demonstrates how well-designed and executed ethnographic fieldwork coupled with anthropologically-informed thinking can generate uncommon insight.”
Robert J. Morais, Principal Emeritus of Weinman Schnee Morais Inc. and Adjunct Professor at Columbia Business School, USA
"Anyone who is engaged in business or tech innovation should read this book"
Ian Smith, Director, Being Guided, UK (Reviewed on Medium)
"Hasbrouck has deftly curated the history of anthropology and design thinking paradigms into an applied method of 'Ethnographic Thinking'. Today, curiosity, awareness, and flexibility are often consultancy buzz words used in sales strategies, customer centricity and organizational adaptation experiments. However, Hasbrouck smartly moves our exploration of a theoretical method to a practical mindset for powerful and relevant innovation and creativity practices. The “Ethnographic Thinking” approach expands the design thinking practice to include the social dynamics and interactions in the context of cultural viewpoints and assumptions.”
Karen S. Walch, Emeritus, Thunderbird School of Global Management, USA
From the Author
I write at the intersection of anthropology and business, with a particular emphasis on the strategic benefits of ethnographic thinking--the thought processes and patterns ethnographers develop through their practice. My work is designed to help teams, companies, and organizations build on the cultural meanings and contexts of their offerings, develop the flexibility to embrace cultural change, and refocus their strategies at critical cultural moments. The goal is to strengthen and advance their positions by helping them understand themselves and others in cultural terms.
I began focusing in this space after observing the dramatic rise of ethnographic research in applied settings. From designers to computer scientists and marketing specialists, many now realize that ethnographic insights can drive the successful development of new products, services, and systems. As an anthropologist, it's encouraging to see ethnographic methods transform how people innovate across an increasing number of disciplines and practices. Yet, there remains a gap between the often limited uses of ethnography in applied settings and the greater value that ethnographic thinking can provide.
My work is aimed at shifting the value of ethnography from simply identifying consumer needs to using ethnographic thinking as a means of driving a more holistic understanding of a company or organization to help it benefit from a deeper understanding of the dynamic cultural contexts of its offerings. In the process, I hope that my writing helps readers increase appreciation for openness and exploration, hone interpretive skills, and cultivate holistic thinking in order to broaden perspectives, challenge assumptions, and cross-pollinate ideas between differing viewpoints.
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This book should be required reading for students of human-centered design methods who might otherwise be led to believe that “doing ethnography” entails little more than an afternoon spent talking to strangers on the street about proposed design solutions.
In this aptly sub-titled volume, Hasbrouck explains that ethnography is more than a method; it’s a mindset — a disciplined mode of thinking. He compares and contrasts ethnographic thinking to what has popularly become known as “design thinking,” making it clear through examples from, and reflections on, his own past projects — that ethnographic thinking requires substantial training and practice. In that, he provides professional ethnographic researchers with a valuable resource for describing to the uninitiated the discipline behind their methods.
This is a clear and concise guide to the value of ethnographic thinking for uncovering structure in complex human systems, whether applied as front-end research for consumer understanding and design or to aid an organization in reflecting on its internal power dynamics, operations, or strategic motivations. Refreshingly well structured and well written, this book is a good read.