it’s a balmy morning in Savannah GA and I am amongst an international group of my anthropological peers to attend the Ethnographic Praxis in Industry Conference at the Savannah College of Art and Design. The theme of this year’s conference is “Renewal” and judging from the program will have a heavy focus on how ethnography is used in design research.
I am always excited to attend these kinds of meetings but never understand why I don’t see more professionals like me who work on the private sector side for market research or other brand and marketing service companies. There always seems to be this misunderstanding of some great divide between academics and the corporate community. But the truth of the matter is that all innovation starts with the thinkers and the “fringe” types. In the case of anthropology, I suppose the “fringe” hangs out in the Universities. Those crazy thinkers and researchers and writers. 😉
To give everyone a taste of the type of knowledge being dropped today, here is some info on the opening Keynote speaker: Emily Pilloton: (from the brochure. I’m totally cheating)
Emily is the founder and executive director of Project H Design ( http://www.projecthdesign.org/ ), a non-profit design agency founded in 2008 to use design and hands-on building for community and educational benefit. Trained in architecture and product design, Emily now spends most days teaching her high school Studio H design / build curriculum, in which students design and build full-scale architectural projects for their hometown. She is the author of the book Design Revolution: 100 Products That Empower People http://www.amazon.com/Design-Revolution-Products-Empower-People/dp/1933045957– a compendium and call-to-action for design for social impact, and has appeared on the TED stage as well as the Colbert Report
I’m looking forward to feeding my brain and being inspired over the next couple days and am thrilled to be in the company of Scott McCreary, a colleague of mine from the great white North – well, the Toronto office.
Here’s to renewal!
- Renewing Ethnography: Exploring The Role of Applied Ethnography At EPIC 2012 (ethnographymatters.net)
- Designing for the Other 90% (realitysandwich.com)