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Applying ethnography in the analysis and support of expertise in engineering design.

Ball, Linden J. and Ormerod, Thomas C. (2000) Applying ethnography in the analysis and support of expertise in engineering design. Design Studies, 21 (4). pp. 403-421. ISSN 0142-694X

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    Abstract

    Whilst many contemporary studies of design have claimed to be using ethnographic methods, the techniques which have been employed often diverge from the characteristics of pure ethnography as used in traditional anthropological and sociological research. We argue that this is entirely appropriate for applied ethnography that is conducted in pursuit of explicit design goals. In this paper, we explore the relationship between pure and applied ethnography, and their use in cognitive and social research. We also discuss how the outcomes of applied ethnography can be applied to i) the design of a computer-based design support tool and ii) the development of controlled experimental studies that retain sufficient ecological validity to capture realistic design expertise. We additionally argue that objectivity in empirical studies of design can be obtained only by triangulating observations across methodologies that embrace both ethnographic and laboratory-based traditions.

    Item Type: Article
    Journal or Publication Title: Design Studies
    Additional Information: The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Design Studies 21 (4), 2000, © ELSEVIER.
    Uncontrolled Keywords: ethnography ; engineering design ; design tools ; design rationale ; research methods
    Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
    Departments: Faculty of Science and Technology > Psychology
    ID Code: 10447
    Deposited By: Prof Tom Ormerod
    Deposited On: 15 Jul 2008 09:43
    Refereed?: Yes
    Published?: Published
    Last Modified: 17 Sep 2013 10:51
    Identification Number:
    URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/10447

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