By Todd Hinkle , Esther Kim, Amar Chadgar, and Maria De La Vega
A LOT has happened since our last post! Our contextual research team has gone out to the Forsyth Farmers’ Market several weekends to conduct observational ethnographic research. We helped the farmers unload from their cars, trucks, and trailers, set up their tents, and then watched as customers were magnetized to the assortment of produce and attractive displays. Most importantly, we captured it all on video. This way we were able to point out some of the pain points that were inextricably weaved into the current process.
That made us question, what exactly was it that these farmers really need to ease the burden in their logistical process? We knew that from our gathered research data, a personal cart that transformed into a produce stand was not as clear-cut of an answer as previously assumed. This was especially because every farmer had different vehicles for transportation, varying loads of produce and possessions, and there was a community flatbed provided by the City of Savannah that was available most Saturdays to help farmers transport everything from the parking lot to their stands.
The interviews and shadowing we did at farms and at the farmer’s market gave us valuable insights about the processes these farmers went through, what their pain points and happy points were, and what they were wanting to improve.
After affinitizing and synthesizing the substantial amount of information we collected, we were able to characterize farmers as being one part of a community. The Value/Enabler Model below reveals the core motivational factors of farmers at the Farmer’s Market based upon our research.
Through our research, we have determined that farmers, volunteers, and others at the Forsyth Farmer’s Market work together, to help each other, because they have passion for this community, and empathy and appreciation for what it takes to put the Farmer’s Market into fruition. Thus, our SCAD contextual research team recommends that Emergent Structures build, out of repurposed materials, something that will help the community thrive, not just an individual. It should help lessen the stress of carrying heavy items, and minimize the number of times the farmers’ containers are loaded/unloaded. It should be adaptable to the different needs of each farmer.
It should be congruent with the resourcefulness of the farmers, who use what they have to the maximum extent. It should support the culture of the Farmer’s market, and bring the nature of the farm to the customers. We have uncovered several more valuable insights through research that should assist and hopefully guide the creation of the final design. The next step is for the Savannah Tech students to come up with some concepts.
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NOTE: Todd Hinkle , Esther Kim, Amar Chadgar, and Maria De La Vega carried out this and so much other valuable contextual research through their participation in a SCAD Contextual Research class led by Professor Sara Johnson, who is also a board member of Emergent Structures. The work you see hear is a fraction of the work they’ve done, and we’ll share more of it as the project moves forward. THANK YOU TODD, ESTHER, AMAR, and MARIA!!!