Sunday, October 13, 2013

Railways station ethnography - can you see what my students saw?

Here is the first of a bunch of films I will be sharing with you. They were made by a team of students from my ethnography week at DSK Pune Industrial Design School.

This exploration included the waiting areas, ticket office, platforms and, obviously, the passengers navigating and interacting with these areas. I won't go into too much detail but the theme they cut these edits together for was 'waiting'. Trains are never on time and people have no idea how late the trains will be. Yet if they knew how long, the wait would be far less stressful and much more productive.

The design brief, based on films, disentangled observations, insights and a thinking framework for the design team aimed to create a physical rather than a service based product. Again, I won't share unless readers twist my arm. This post is to showcase they film which they narrated beautifully and insightfully during their presentation.

My challenge to reader: Can you see what they say on these films? Answers in comments please.



  1. Hmm, I see ingress/egress problems - crowd flow is unpredictable. Everyone is carrying something so they only have one hand free to help get on/off the train. No (uniformed) aid is visible. No ground markings for passenger preboard or manifest. The train does not stop at the same point consistently? When the train leaves there are people still boarding and the car's doors remain open while the train is moving. It appears people are free to load cargo at any point.

    How'd I do?

  2. Good obs. You'll need to watch a few hours worth of this to come up with implications though :-)

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