User Research and its inevitable evolution | by Dave Hora | Jan, 2024

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Certainly, research is a less-established, less-integrated, and less-essential profession in the technology organization compared to engineering or design. It does not create an output directly visible to users. Its value for some kinds of organizations, especially those without a strong design perspective is less apparent. The pressure we’re feeling in our profession is real.

I want to argue, though, that there is no structural fault in the research profession itself; no reason to believe that researchers have been dramatically misguided in developing our practice.

Along with higher interest rates, a corporate drive for operational efficiency, and aggressive staff reductions, there’s no evidence that research-as-a-profession has a qualitatively lower standing with those who previously recognized its value, versus being a casualty of circumstance.

And even now, organizations that recognize the value of contextual insight and evidence-based product development continue to open and fill roles for…

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