Empathic Engineers


How accurately can you understand a person?

As a designer, how well are you really able to understand users when you are empathizing with them? Our research shows, some factors may increase or decrease your empathic understanding. Do you know what they are and how do they influence your understanding accuracy? Users are not always thinking about the product during an interview. Do you know what are they thinking about?

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adminHow accurately can you understand a person?

Can you transfer empathy? 

Gaining a deep understanding of users has become important in technology development, helping designers provide useful and successful solutions for the users.  Even though many methods developed for empathic design emphasize direct contact with the user, it is seldom efficient for the whole development team to meet the user.
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adminCan you transfer empathy? 

Catching emotions

A newborn begins to cry, inducing her neonatal neighbors to join in an ensemble of high pitch cries. A few years later, that child runs to hug her classmate in pain. As a teenager, she enjoys hanging out with her friends. Sometimes she laughs with them, even though she is not sure what they are laughing about. A few years later, this teen is a professional designer interviewing a user for the first time. Her colleagues say she is good at building an “emotional connection” with her clients. She cannot tell for sure why, but she feels she connects with the emotions of others and can sometimes experience on her flesh the sensations and feelings described by someone else.

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adminCatching emotions

The evolution of empathy

Empathy is part of our everyday life. Empathy allows us to understand others and to feel the joys and sorrows of fictional movie characters as if they were real. Empathic understanding helps us to recognize the needs of other people and can even lead to extreme forms of unselfish behavior. People have even donated their kidney to an unknown person without expecting anything in return. Where does this remarkable ability originate? Often, it’s said that only humans can feel empathy. But what should we think, for example, about birds that show characteristics of empathy or unselfish behavior among single-celled organisms?

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adminThe evolution of empathy