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Using Online Reviews as Narratives to Evoke Designer’s Empathy

  • Christiane GrünlohEmail author
  • Åke Walldius
  • Gerhard Hartmann
  • Jan Gulliksen
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9296)

Abstract

Gathering health-related data is quite easy, but visualizing them in a meaningful way remains challenging, especially when the application domain is very complex. Research suggests that empathy can facilitate the design process and that narratives can help to create an empathic encounter between designers and the prospective users. We conducted an exploratory quasi-experiment in order to explore whether narratives in form of online reviews are able to evoke designer’s empathy when developing an online platform for a direct-to-consumer genetic testing service. The results suggest that the narratives can help designers to engage with and take the perspective of the prospective user, who is then represented in more detail. Lacking narratives from real people leaves the designers to their own imagination, which can lead to the use of rather abstract stereotypes that do not enable an understanding of the user, but affect the subsequent design decisions.

Keywords

Human-Computer interaction Empathy Direct-to-consumer Genetic testing Health and wellbeing 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We would like to thank all participants of the study for their time and commitment. Furthermore, we thank the anonymous reviewers for their detailed comments and thoughtful suggestions on our submission, which were very considerate and helpful.

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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christiane Grünloh
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Åke Walldius
    • 1
  • Gerhard Hartmann
    • 2
  • Jan Gulliksen
    • 1
  1. 1.KTH Royal Institute of TechnologyStockholmSweden
  2. 2.CUAS Cologne University of Applied SciencesGummersbachGermany

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