Tag Archives: ethnography

Improving bicycle parking at train stations

Bicycle parking at train stations in big cities is an increasing problem in the Netherlands. A lot of travellers park their bikes along the streets and footpaths around the train station. In many places this causes a huge mess, with bikes standing in the way of pedestrians, and cyclists scrambling to find a place for their bike. At the same time existing indoor bicycle storage spaces around the stations are underused. This is an issue for municipal authorities as well as for NS and Prorail (the main train operator and rail infrastructure company in the country), and also for the association of cyclists. They jointly decided to invest in improving the situation and come up with a new concept for bicycle parking at stations that could cater for everyone. To inspire and facilitate the conversations between the different stakeholders, STBY was asked to investigate and represent the perspective of cyclists on this matter.

What can we learn from lead patients using wearables?

The Dutch Ministery of Public Health advocates an increased focus on e-health, with the aim that more and more people will monitor and manage their healthy lifestyles through using smart technologies. One of the strategic goals is for 75 percent of patients with chronic diseases to use self-measurement technologies as part of their everyday lives within 5 years. To reach this goal, it is necessary to better understand and cater for the needs of these patients. It is important to enable their self-sufficiency, while preventing a mere technology push that would incur unnecessary costs and resistance to usage.

Family Oriented Services

STBY has recently completed a design research project for an international communications company focusing on family oriented services. Successful family oriented services can already be found in many industries, from banking to utilities. They are seen as a very effective way to satisfy and retain customers. While the family oriented concept has been widely used by marketeers and advertisers in the past, designers and strategists need a deeper understanding of the information flows, habits and motivations of individuals within a household – a very special context. STBY helped one of our clients by designing and conducting a generative design research […]

Agri Meets Design: Usage of plant protection treatments

At the invitation of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, the STBY team has immersed themselves in the information exchange between the government and the market on plant protection. Over the past few months the experiences of farmers and other stakeholders have been investigated, and suggestions for the improvement of identified bottlenecks were made.

Routledge Companion to Design Research

STBY was invited to contribute a chapter to the book ‘Routledge Companion to Design Research‘, edited by Professor Paul Rodgers and Dr. Joyce Yee for Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group Publishers. This high profile book is published to support undergraduate and postgraduate education in design research. The editors set out to celebrate and illustrate the plurality of design research, and also the wide range of conceptual, methodological, technological and theoretical approaches evident in contemporary design research. They collected a wide range of cross-disciplinary contributions from the global design research community. STBY is proud to be included in this book with […]

Studying new behaviours across an ecosystem of devices

As a follow up on our previous work on mobile phone devices, we recently completed an intensive though extremely exciting project on new and changing behaviours of owners of smartphones and devices. The last three to four years has seen a massive surge in the intelligence as well as size, shape and type of devices available to consumers. From smartphones to the latest tablets and phablets, there is an overarching range of technology we not only use but have become dependent on in running our everyday life. Though many definitions exist – for the purposes of our study, we simplified […]

Giving the floor to the employees: Working with local government staff on service improvements

Following up on a previous study among entrepreneurs in Amsterdam about their experiences with the service offering from the local government, STBY conducted a series of workshops in each of Amsterdam’s seven district councils. The aim of the workshops was both to present the results of the study to the service employees and to jointly explore opportunities for improvement with them.

Reviewing municipal service delivery: Learning from the experiences of entrepreneurs in Haarlem

The city of Haarlem is keen to improve its services to local entrepreneurs. To this purpose, they have initiated several activities. One of these is the campaign ‘More Service, Less Rules’. Another such initiative is a qualitative research among local entrepreneurs to learn from their experiences. STBY was asked by the Chamber of Commerce to conduct this study. The aim was to elicit entrepreneurs’ experiences and satisfaction with the municipal service delivery, and to advise on solutions to the barriers that entrepreneurs are facing.

Investigations on emerging usage of smart devices

Over the past year we have worked on an extensive series of projects investigating how people make use of ‘ecosystems of smart devices’. We have, for instance, looked into how people make choices on which devices to use in particular circumstances and situations. In many occasions the functionality of the various smart devices people own (e.g. smart phones, tablets, computers, game consoles, in-car navigation devices, cameras) partly overlaps and partly supplements each other, so what to choose when, where and why?

Defining ‘Smart’: Using Video to Explore Smartphone Usage

  Do people in different countries have different ideas as to what a smartphone can do for them? In the latest of a series of projects conducted for a major telecoms company, STBY have just finished an in-depth international study that used video to explore what role smartphones have in peoples everyday lives. We constructed a series of design documentaries that provide vivid insights into the various things people do – or at least try to do – using their phones.   Conducted as a series of discrete studies within particular time-constraints, this project was an excellent example of how […]