The Economist features work by Swisscom anthropologist Stefana Broadbent

The Economist on Stefana Broadbent
The Economist published an article today on anthropologists who are investigating the use of communications technology and particularly on the sometimes surprising conclusions coming from Swisscom anthropologist Stefana Broadbent.

“Stefana Broadbent, an anthropologist who leads the User Adoption Lab at Swisscom, Switzerland’s largest telecoms operator, has been looking at usage patterns associated with different communications technologies. She and her team based their research on observation, interviews, surveys of users’ homes and asking people to keep logbooks of their communications usage in several European countries. Some of their findings are quite unexpected.”

The article, which was written by Bruno Giussani, features six of Stefana’s interesting research results:

  • A typical user spends 80% of his or her time communicating with just four other people.
  • People are using different communications technologies (fixed-line calls, mobile calls, texting, IM, VOiP) in distinct and divergent ways.
  • There is a flattening in voice communication and an increase in written channels.
  • Instead of work invading private life, private communications are invading the workplace.
  • People generally do not work while on the move: hotel rooms and airports are not seen as an appropriate environment for substantive work and are mainly used for e-mail.
  • Migrants are the most advanced users of communications technology.

Read full story


  1. […] observation that our communication is shifting from the spoken word to text, which is confirmed by Swisscom’s ethnographic research on communication patterns in […]

  2. […] comunicazione sta passando dal linguaggio parlato a quello testuale, osservazione confermata dalla ricerca etnografica della Swisscom sui paradigmi di comunicazione in […]

  3. […] states that ethnic minority groups are the prime early adopters in Europe, thereby confirming ethnographic user research at Swisscom. “Ethnic minority groups are at the forefront of digital communications in the […]

  4. […] dichiara che le minoranze etniche sono i principali early adopters in Europa, confermando così la ricerca etnografica user di […]

  5. […] work was published in Business Week and The Economist, and she was a speaker at many conferences, including LIFT and […]

  6. […] suo lavoro è stato pubblicato su Business Week e The Economist, ed è stata relatrice presso diverse conferenze tra cui LIFT e […]

Leave a Reply