Get 20M+ Full-Text Papers For Less Than $1.50/day. Start a 14-Day Trial for You or Your Team.

Learn More →

An ethnographic justification for establishment of a contextual engineering discipline

An ethnographic justification for establishment of a contextual engineering discipline The purpose of this paper is to provide an ethnographic analysis of the infrastructure intervention process in rural, non-industrialized countries, providing justification for a new approach to technical design. The new approach, Contextual Engineering, merges engineering with sociology to identify place-based conditions that may influence adoption of technological interventions.Design/methodology/approachA survey of international engineering practitioners, combined with the author's personal journals from 18 international project experiences are qualitatively analyzed using nVivo software to develop a stronger understanding of what motivates stakeholders to undertake humanitarian engineering work, how they incorporate place-based conditions and how their decision-making affects intervention outcomes.FindingsCritical findings include the need for practitioner self-reflection to recognize motivations and beliefs; recognition that industrialized-world technology may not function effectively if it doesn’t acknowledge the client’s societal standards; identification of local context to determine practices, knowledge and beliefs that reside uniquely within the client community; resistance to application of practitioner standards that may not correspond with client conditions, understandings and needs; analysis of power dynamics within the client community, between client and neighboring communities, and among project stakeholders; and incorporation of innovative self-sufficiency in technical infrastructure design.Originality/valueThis paper follows upon previous published research by the author regarding the origin and application of her new approach to rural international infrastructure design, Contextual Engineering, and uses ethnographic qualitative analysis to identify key conditions that justify the Contextual Engineering discipline to more effectively serve rural clients from alternately developed societies. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Engineering Design and Technology Emerald Publishing

An ethnographic justification for establishment of a contextual engineering discipline

Loading next page...
 
/lp/emerald-publishing/an-ethnographic-justification-for-establishment-of-a-contextual-2ZkIPmh15O

References (11)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
1726-0531
DOI
10.1108/jedt-11-2018-0211
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to provide an ethnographic analysis of the infrastructure intervention process in rural, non-industrialized countries, providing justification for a new approach to technical design. The new approach, Contextual Engineering, merges engineering with sociology to identify place-based conditions that may influence adoption of technological interventions.Design/methodology/approachA survey of international engineering practitioners, combined with the author's personal journals from 18 international project experiences are qualitatively analyzed using nVivo software to develop a stronger understanding of what motivates stakeholders to undertake humanitarian engineering work, how they incorporate place-based conditions and how their decision-making affects intervention outcomes.FindingsCritical findings include the need for practitioner self-reflection to recognize motivations and beliefs; recognition that industrialized-world technology may not function effectively if it doesn’t acknowledge the client’s societal standards; identification of local context to determine practices, knowledge and beliefs that reside uniquely within the client community; resistance to application of practitioner standards that may not correspond with client conditions, understandings and needs; analysis of power dynamics within the client community, between client and neighboring communities, and among project stakeholders; and incorporation of innovative self-sufficiency in technical infrastructure design.Originality/valueThis paper follows upon previous published research by the author regarding the origin and application of her new approach to rural international infrastructure design, Contextual Engineering, and uses ethnographic qualitative analysis to identify key conditions that justify the Contextual Engineering discipline to more effectively serve rural clients from alternately developed societies.

Journal

Journal of Engineering Design and TechnologyEmerald Publishing

Published: Mar 9, 2020

Keywords: Rural development; Sustainable construction; Infrastructure design; Contextual engineering; Humanitarian engineering; Contextual; Engineering; Development; Infrastructure; Rural; Sustainable

There are no references for this article.