It’s finally time to share our third keynote speaker announcement! We’re very happy to welcome Steve Portigal to the MIdwestUX stage this year. (Missed our other keynote announcements? Find them here and here.)

Steve Portigal

Steve helps companies to think and act strategically when innovating with user insights. Based outside of San Francisco, he is principal of Portigal Consulting, and the author of two books: The classic Interviewing Users: How To Uncover Compelling Insights and new, Doorbells, Danger, and Dead Batteries: User Research War Stories. He's also the host of the Dollars to Donuts podcast, where he interviews people who lead user research in their organizations. Steve is an accomplished presenter who speaks about culture, innovation, and design at companies and conferences across the globe.

His talk is called Learning From User Research War Stories. Stories make the world go round. As researchers, we love stories, and essentially it's our job to gather stories and to retell them. War Stories are stories about contextual user research and the inevitable mishaps that ensue, which are in turn bizarre, comic, tragic, and generally astonishing.

Steve will share some of the best stories from his book Doorbells, Danger, and Dead Batteries, examining the patterns and lessons they reveal. For a practice that isn’t always well understood or trusted, there’s pressure to only speak to the successes. But examining the human messiness of this work can help develop our skills and our community. Steve’s collection of stories fills a longstanding need for the design and research community—sharing what can go wrong in the real world.

If you haven’t purchased your ticket yet, it’s time to make your move. They’re selling fast, but you can still buy your MWUX ticket right now.