What is Research?

Research comes early on in the human centred design process. Its purpose is to understand the behaviours, needs and motivations of a target user group. This understanding provides opportunities for design.


We are familiar with a range of User Research techniques that can be applied to projects. Below we cover some of the most effective.

  • Contextual inquiry – Exploring how users complete an activity within a natural setting (e.g. at home / on commute) whilst interviewing them about their behaviour. Provides insights into user’s natural behaviour and motivations.
  • Interviews – Conducting one to one conversations with users to gain insights into their understanding of the area you are designing for. Interviews are a great way of discovering user perceptions of a system, company or working practices in their own words.
  • Vox pops – Stopping members of the public in a busy public space and videotaping brief sound bites on a particular topic. Provides broad range of insights into public perceptions on target topic.