Farewell London. Rozloučení Prague.
Farewell to new colleagues I have met and friends we have made.
Each city inspired us to see the world through a new lense. Together we opened our ethnographers’ eyes to new cultures and began to see how brands move across cultures. The truth is, I could only guess at how this class would unfold. I had a plan and a lot of industry contacts. But, blending two universities and 15 people (who didn’t know one another) and dropping them into foreign lands was not a sure bet for success. It was, however, an assured adventure. And what an adventure it turned out to be.
Together we immersed ourselves into worlds unknown, opened our sense to unfamiliar cultures in search of their unique cultural codes for autos, beer and fashion. My students were like sponges and I ran them ragged. We traversed each city moving from ad agencies, to neighborhoods, and then on to shopping malls and auto dealers, often ending up at pubs. We attended classical concerts, visited museums, and walked historical streets. In short we were students of culture. To see the cultural codes they determined for each sector, check the comments below or their sector links. Enjoy!
To my students I say, it was a privilege to be your teacher and to learn side by side.
To my gracious colleagues, a heartfelt thank you.
Today we concluded our ethnographic brand tracking in Prague. After one week of ethnography and agency visits, we spent the last afternoon of our class reflecting on Czech culture, and more specifically, how it influences the consumption of autos, beer and fashion. After a lot of deliberation, the three groups came up with culture codes that they think best represent their respective sectors here in the Czech Republic. Check out each of the three culture codes within the sector blogs: autos, beer, fashion.
The ethnographic brand tracking helped the students to observe behavior and identify key patterns within their sector. The agency visits throughout the week helped the students to uncover the cultural meaning behind these observed behaviors within a historical context and learn about some of the successful strategies behind Czech advertising from the best that Prague has to offer: Remmark, Garp, Leagas Delaney, and Ogilvy.
As part of the final wrap up, the students also had a discussion about Czech advertising in general. With the help of Jan Tluchor, who joined us from the University of West Bohemia, the students compared and contrasted Czech advertising with British and American advertising.
Overall, it was an inspiring week. Everyone acted like true ethnographers and soaked up everything Czech culture had to offer. Most importantly, the students kept their minds open and embraced all of the different perspectives we learned about – something that will positively influence the approach they take with future work. Our sincerest děkuji to everyone along the way who helped to make our experience here in Prague so meaningful.
To conclude our time spent in the beautiful Czech Republic, we made a cultural collage with contributions from each student. Each item represents some aspect of the student’s experience here in Prague – none of which could be purchased. Each student’s interpretation of the collage is posted below in the comments section in the form of a headline.
Filed under Teaching, Travel