Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Workshop Summaries (TB)

Defining the Impact of Physical Spaces on Social Interactions
We started with the notion of being here and the subject of conversation and discussed how we were grounded in materiality and social interaction. What emerged was people’s locatedness as they come from such diverse backgrounds

Business Ethnography for the Bottom of the Pyramid
Our main theme looked at how you can convince companies to see value in the Bottom of the Pyramid (BOP) as well as commit to social responsibility? What we concluded with was that we need a call for a radical change and perhaps we should start with what the findings from the bottom of the pyramid can feed back into the top of the pyramid.

Working the Process: Anthropological Approaches to Designing and Evaluating Organizational Work Processes
We unpacked the concept of work process and decided that it always gets recontextualized, methods always need to be adjusted when you study and what we need is for these methids to be transdisciplinary so that we can share our work and share our results.

Holy Hanging Out: Exploring Spirituality and Religion in the Corporate Environment
Religious groups represent a market and we need to understand the significance of religion in society. We need the tools and techniques to study and communicate this research. Religion transcends god, it’s a practice and a huge business opportunity. If we don’t consider religion and spirituality, we’ll become irrelevant because it is so key to people in the world.

Framing Ethnographic Praxis for Innovation
What are the theories for ethnographic praxis? What are the dialogic dimensions? Who are the people that we’re talking about? What are the dimension of engagement? What are the contexts of creativity. We concluded with a mapping out of the space of production of innovation as a social process.

Collaborating across social, organizational, and siciplinary distances
What are our challenges with collaboration? We worked with video clips to think about how we observe. If we start with a picture of how we executed research – how do we get there – what are the problems that then emerge of framing ethnographic research?

Studying Distributed Sociality - Online and Offline
We started with preliminary remarks about our backgrounds and asked questions such as – how do you get informed consent from an avatar? and what is happening for participant observation as we move into online and offline research?

Object Sociality. Researching Living Things
How we should conceptualize objects? We looked at contemporary theory such as the social life of things and actor network theory. We shared personal stories about objects, demonstrating the thickness and richness of relationships and the biographical dimensions and timelines of people's connections to objects.

The Sociality of Fieldwork (or Personal Experiences with Interpersonal Connections)
Our session spiralled out of control and we discussed things like what do you do when you hear or see people cry during an interview? Or when you start off listening and ending up counselling? What are the social and cultural issues issues of truth? How do we define the concept of truth?


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