An ethnography is a type of primary research that provides a scientific description of the customs of people and cultures. Ethnographic research is primarily used in the anthropology, sociology, and communication disciplines. To learn more about how you might be able to utilize ethnography in a company or organization, read this article from the Harvard Business Review, Ethnographic Research: A Key to Strategy. (Links to an external site.)
For this assignment, you will conduct a Mini Ethnography of a place. Visit a cultural center you have never visited before. Keep in mind that almost anything can serve as a site of cultural activity including restaurants, places of worship outside of your faith community, parks, or stores catering to specific cultural communities (i.e., specializing in crafts or a specific kind of sport). Draft a document of 400-500 words reflecting on your experience.
Using techniques from ethnographic research, be sure to include the following in your reflection:
What did you notice first and why?
Describe the cultural center itself as well as the people frequenting the site.
Describe one unique element of the cultural center. Why was this element unique to you?
Describe one element you have in common with those who frequented the cultural site during your visit.
Did you feel uncomfortable or out of place? If so, why? If not, why not?