Sam Ladner

RRS Being Cassandra: how to speak truth to power without losing your mind

Researchers often find themselves speaking truth to power, and being the bearer of bad news. The role requires scientific and interpersonal skill, and incredible emotional fortitude. In this talk, I’ll turn to the Greek myth of Cassandra for guidance. How can meet the challenge of being the only in the room seeing what we see?

What kinds of strategies can we employ to mitigate the emotional burnout this entails? What are the hidden beauties of being a Cassandra?

RRS Biography

Sam Ladner is a sociologist who helps teams innovate, design, and learn. She is the author of Practical Ethnography: A Guide to Doing Ethnography in The Private Sector. She has worked on dozens of advanced software projects including Alexa, the Echo Look, Windows 10, Microsoft Office 2016, Cortana, and HoloLens.

She received her PhD in sociology from York University and teaches design research innovation methods at Ontario College of Art and Design University.


Adjunct Professor

Ontario College of Art and Design

RRS Summit Organizers

This summit is organized by research practitioners from Spatial Research & Design and Blueprint UX, local UX design companies, and global technology leaders Samsung, Facebook, and mCloud. The organizers are passionate about research that inspires new ideas and improves product design/strategy.

Our goal for the summit is to strengthen the Pacific Northwest research community by sharing research approaches, methods and ideas for contributing to better human-centred product/service design.