What does it take to delight today's customers?

What does it take to delight today's customers?

What does it take to delight today’s customers? Our latest research with 2000 consumers across the globe sought to explore the factors that create truly exceptional customer experiences.

How to avoid death by PowerPoint: invest in design

How to avoid death by PowerPoint: invest in design

Design is the silver bullet for research. Make your findings interesting, simple and easy to understand and the world will take notice. Read our 3 tips for starting your design journey.

How do people commute across the globe?

How do people commute across the globe?

We all complain about our daily commute. But have you ever wondered how it compares to others around the world? Our latest research lifts the lid on commuting behaviours worldwide.

Designing a Research Future – when disciplines collide!

Designing a Research Future – when disciplines collide!

When we take a moment to envision the world ten to fifteen years from now, it’s quite likely we will imagine a lot of new technology and innovations, driven by great economic progress and prosperity. We optimistically think that global and societal problems in the areas of health, education, and environment would be solved in a tech-utopia.

 

Attention has shifted to the Asia-Pacific region as a global economic leader due to progress, prosperity and technological advancements. At the same time, there is a challenge to embrace this economic acceleration, and still uphold social and cultural sustainability. Looking at exhibitions positing visions of the future (e.g. ‘Future of Us’ in Singapore, ‘The Future Starts Here’ in London), they feel too infrastructure-, technology- and design-led. Social innovation - ideas, activities and products that work towards meeting social sustainability goals - have become a growing area, but run the risk of being Western-centric, and could overlook tradition, culture, and heterogeneous beliefs and practices.  We need to ground these visions in actual human realities of Asia-Pacific if we want design and innovation to resonate emotionally and transform the region.

 

The question then is how to best harness technology’s potential for greater impact in addressing sustainability goals in ways that would still be true to the Asia-Pacific community?

 

This is where design thinking meets futures thinking meets ethnography for social innovation - a collaboration between designers, futurists, and ethnographers in the design process. Design thinking focuses on creating products for today’s world, while futures thinking aims to inspire and uncover possibilities that we may have in the coming years. Ethnography then helps to uncover human-centered perspectives for identifying and understanding complex, multiple needs that people are not always able to express.

 

What is needed in order is a framework that facilitates conversations to create new products and services that have cultural content and meaning based on cultural values. A framework that encompasses the following:

 

Futures thinking:

  • Understanding existing power structure of a country, how its dominant narrative is constructed, and the negotiations that people have with that dominant narrative

  • Framing or (reframing) of problems and possibilities

  • Thinking long-term and transgenerational, rather than short-term

 

Ethnography:

  • Immersing in and being sensitive to cultural nuance and conditions, in order to understand how these could play out in design projects

  • Generating knowledge on cultural values and meaning, and barriers of adoption to technologies

 

Design thinking:

  • Observing how ‘design’ is adopted into people’s everyday lives

  • Evaluation of ideas, concepts, products, and service prototypes i.e. a ‘reality check’


TYPOGRAPHY AS BODY LANGUAGE

TYPOGRAPHY AS BODY LANGUAGE

Have you ever stood in front of an audience in your underwear? You feel the sweat dripping down your back. Your nerves are trembling. Your body language shows this isn’t going as planned. Why didn’t you wear pants? WAKE UP! Thankfully, this was just a terrible dream.

URBAN COMMUTING FROM TWO GLOBAL CITIES: COMMUTER PAIN OR GAIN?

URBAN COMMUTING FROM TWO GLOBAL CITIES: COMMUTER PAIN OR GAIN?

I always get asked the same old question, “What do you miss most about living in Hong Kong?”. Needless to say, besides the extensive range of cheap local food, transportation and commuting made it to the very top of my list.

THE POWER OF STORYTELLING

THE POWER OF STORYTELLING

If effective storytelling is proven to persuade people to act, why then does storytelling struggle to permeate the world of consultancy?

Will cannabis usage become ubiquitous among US adults?

Will cannabis usage become ubiquitous among US adults?

New research from Kadence International has found that, 18% of Americans over the age of 21 have used cannabis in the last year. However, as cannabis becomes increasingly legal and destigmatized, more adults in the U.S. are willing to try it. Though 81% of American adults are not current cannabis users, 71% reported that they would be highly likely to try it in the next 12 months. In other words, only a mere 7% of adults living in the United States say they are unlikely to use cannabis in the next year.

Marijuana use has long been thought of as a recreational substance for a small portion of the population, which may be one of the reasons people have been holding back. This study identified a significant connection between wide-spread cannabis legalization and general attitudes about the substance. 41% of non-cannabis users stated that they’ve avoided marijuana because it’s illegal, but 70% of those stated that they would be likely to try cannabis if it were legalized where they live. As marijuana becomes less stigmatized due to the removal of legal barriers over the next few years, the large number of interested non-users are very likely to enter the fast-growing market space.

For those adults currently using cannabis, many are sticking to traditional methods. 2-in-3 cannabis users prefer to smoke marijuana compared to only 12% who prefer consuming edibles. They tend to prefer to smoke because they feel it is more convenient, but that may be an accessibility issue. Regardless of their method of consumption, over a third of adult cannabis users surveyed consume cannabis to help them relax and unwind after a long day.

While now recreationally legalized in a number of US states, discussing cannabis and its benefits is often done in hushed tones. The study we have conducted tries to demonstrate the role that cannabis has in modern society. This research study helps us understand the drivers of cannabis use in the United States, and while there is still a stigma attached to usage, a surprisingly large portion of the adult population is either using cannabis or strongly considering it in the coming year
— Miriam Konz, managing director at Kadence International

Given the overwhelming level of interest, it is easy to believe industry reports that say that the North American market will grow from $9.2 billion in 2017 to $47.3 billion a decade later.