Presentation on theme: "Engaging the Users in Multidisciplinary Projects"— Presentation transcript:
1 Engaging the Users in Multidisciplinary Projects Torben Elgaard JensenProfessorEngaging the Users in Multidisciplinary ProjectsHow to find themWhat to do with themAnd where to go nextPresentation for the conference on‘Opportunities and Challenges in Interdisciplinary Research, London, Oct 9th 2012.
2 The problem User-driven Innovation programme in Denmark 2007- 55 mio €, +100 projectsConnecting the understanding of users in social sciences with technical-natural sciencesConnecting universities with private sector and municipalities.My research: comparative qualitative studies of projects”Working in a multi-disciplinary team, I am finding myself acting as a mediator between social and natural sciences, and users and the academia”.(Anna Krzywoszynska,Solar Energy for Future Societies)Ksyvoshyniska
3 Provide vocabulary for user engagement in multidisciplinary projects Purpose of this talkProvide vocabulary for user engagement inmultidisciplinary projectsHow to find usersWhat to do with themAnd where to go nextCatch them, kill them with alcohol, pin them, and put them in a display case.
4 How to find the users 1. Business Anthropology 2. Lead user process – discovering unacknowledged needs2. Lead user process– tapping into the creativity of usersEssentially – send the anthropologists, send the spies, or send the diplomats.3. Participatory design- Collaborating with users
5 What to do with the users? Looking inside the projects 1. A similarity in methods(observation, photo, interviews, workshops)2. Leading to a similar excess of material…3. Leading to at least three strikingly different ’preservation strategies’.Design briefsConcepts of everyday lifeDemonstrations
6 User statement Photo Nurse statement Excerpt from a study Preservation strategy 1: Design briefsUser statementPhotoNurse statementExcerpt from a study
7 Relation to other rationalities Preservation strategy 2: Concepts of everyday lifeEconomyTimeLogisticsHealthEthicsSocialityPleasureDefinitionRelation to other rationalitiesExamples and illustrations
9 Preservation stategies Design Briefs: information from and about users is presented as support for particular design ideas. Concepts of everyday life: information from and about users is summed up in a network of concepts describing the durable structures of everyday life, which the designers of future solutions should take into account. Demonstrations (Rehearsing the future): Practical scenario are developed in a previous workshop. The users rehearse these scenerios on location, and their enactment of how something ’might work’ is wittnessed and recorded.
10 Where to go next ? - or what to expect Projects as machines ? Project synergy ? Boundary objects (Star & Griesemer 1989) Trading zones (Galison 1997) Collateral benefits (Jespersen et al, forthcoming)
11 The ebbs and flows of projects? ComplexifyProjectTechnologyEngaging the users’Defining ‘the’ technology‘preservation of users’UsersSimplifyPreEarlyLatePost
12 Conclusions: Interdisciplinarity is the problem as well as the answer The devil is in the details: Everything in interdisciplinary projects hinges on assumptions about users and technologies, and on the arrangements and preservation styles that allow us to get these things in and out of interdisciplinary projects. And the devil is interdisciplinary: Our world consists of wildly complex systems such as the energy system. These systems are based on contributions from a range of discilines - math, economics, physics, social science. If we want to wrestle with the problems of these ’interdisciplinary’ systems, we also have to take an interdisciplinary approach.