FutureWire - futurism and emerging technology

Monday, June 26, 2006

Using Ethnography to Innovate

To innovate and compete in today's global and rapidly changing economy, businesses are turning to ethnography to help them better understand their current and potential customers. Using principles of anthropology and cultural demographics, this relatively new discipline allows companies to market to specific groups in specific regions.

Intel is a leader in this effort, identifying such groups as "transnationals" who travel extensively and depend on technology to keep them connected. Such observations come as a result of studying people's daily behaviors, interviews, partnering with other experts, and understanding of local customs and preferences. Other organizations with fewer resources will surely want to leverage this practice... perhaps leading to opportunities for consulting ethnographers.

Source: BusinessWeek