Bringing Life to life: Ipsos UU
Bringing Life to life: Ipsos UU


Ethnography is a qualitative research technique based on observation. It means that we spend extended periods of time and immerse with people to understand what they say, what they do and how they do it.

Client context

How can I better know my consumers?
What matters to them? What drives their behaviours?
How do they live?
How do they consume my product?


Our ethnographic work is conducted by the Ipsos Ethnography Centre of Excellence that communicates deep human truth.  We use principles of anthropology. The Ethnography Center of Excellence is a group of ethnographers, anthropologists, market researchers and filmmakers. We work in 24 markets with public and private sector clients and have hubs in UK and USA.

We capture activities and interactions in situ – at home, store, office, street, transport… with a strong focus on the environment surrounding the consumers (in-context observation).  The teams use cultural and behavioral economics lenses to understand the drivers of behaviour and then develop potential interventions to encourage desired behaviors.

Video is used to record data in the field, for analysis and to report on findings.

Ipsos UU Immersions apply the principles of ethnographic research to in-home immersion research.  The offer is supported by an Ipsos Immersion App designed for researchers (not participants!) which encourages them to capture ethnographic data in the field.  Capturing data in this way means that teams can use visual data to create analysis boards that go beyond articulated behavior, to take a more cultural view of observed behaviors. 

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Case studies

Our client wanted to look at the barriers to purchasing dog and cat food in 6 global markets. Their goal was to convert pet owners who fed their pets ‘human food’ to feeding them ‘pet food’. Ethnographers spent time in the homes of pet owners across these markets. A key finding was that people love cooking for their pets – so our client was encouraged to create solutions that mix home-prepared food with manufactured pet food.