Many people in my industry seem to assume that because people can't always give researchers answers to their direct questions ('Why do you ...?"), they have to resort to a machine to gain the insight for them.

In my view, this ignores how much researchers can learn from observing how people behave.  I don't just mean observing someone navigating an app (though that can be useful). I mean observing people do things that they had not realised they were doing and then interpreting that in the light of social science theory such as the theories of the late anthropologist Victor Turner who continues to inspire me. 

This new blog series 'Everyday rituals' is a catalogue of my thoughts about the everyday rituals that are so closely entwined into our ordinary lives and how they affect behaviour.

I will add to this sub-blog on an ad hoc basis featuring them here on my blog, on my Twitter and LinkedIn pages as well as my quarterly newsletter which you can subscribe to here.

Tags: Rituals

Decoding the meaning of the Christmas meal

The Christmas meal is a complex symbol rich with meaning.

The Esomar publication RW Connect has published a semiotic analysis of how women are depicted in the media at Christmas in the UK and Australia co-authored by Susan Bell and Lynne Freeman. It shows that women have been depicted as the invisible architects of a feast.

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