The world is complex, competition is stiff, and ethnography is here to inform strategy and design. As brands strive to reach new markets and products seek to address the needs of new users, researchers who support these efforts may find themselves in search for new tools and techniques. Traditional qualitative consumer and user research methods such as focus groups, usability tests, and other lab-based methods yield valuable findings but they have their limits. For teams engaged in user-centered innovation, success depends on their ability to understand people, their needs, and their behaviors. Ethnography can unlock new levels of understanding through immersion and contextual learning.
Giles is a UX Researcher with a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology. He works at Google and focuses on communication and expression. Previously, Giles worked at Altria and State Farm Insurance where supported product design and marketing efforts. In his spare time, he skateboards with his dog in the streets of San Francisco.