Chandrika Cycil

An Ethnographic Study of Family Life and use of Media in the Family Car

My research aims to study how family and home life is constituted in the car, while exploring the role and use of media in this setting. With increasing number of new mobile technologies to support, assist and entertain parents and children, family life and the ways in which we interact around technology is being transformed everyday. The research wishes to point to the cultural, social and technological organization of activity in the car that can be used so as to inform design. Through video-ethnographic observations-based on ethnomethodology and interaction analysis, I aim to sensitise designers to the ‘organisation of social action’ within technology use. My PhD work involved ethnographic work and user evaluations with 12 families, the findings of which informed collaborative workshops with designers.

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