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Deborah Tannen Teaches Us How To Frame Questions, Problems, Stories--and Ourselves.

Posted by: Bruce Nussbaum on February 22, 2006

When it comes to innovation, framing the problem is often the most important part of the process leading to the design of a unique, game-changing, paradigm-shifting solution. You hear the term “framing” all the time now in the innovation space. Even CEOs and managers are using it. In fact, one cardinal rule of innovation is don’t always accept the problem handed you but reframe it to maximize the changes you can make in the space. For example, it isn’t about a better looking MP3 player, it is about controlling and managing your personal music library with ease and pleasure—iPod.

So if you want to learn about framing, go to where the concept originated—in academic circles. Framing is hot and the most accessible linguist on the subject of framing is none other than the best-selling auther/professor, Deborah Tannen. Her latest book, “You’re Wearing That? Understanding Mothers and Daughters in Conversation,” continues her examination of how we frame we other in conversation that began with a dissertation and found popular life in “You Just Don’t Understand What I Meant!”

Tannen isn’t the first academic in the field of framing. Erving Goffman was writing about it decades ago. But her books are not only serious, but great fun to read. And which daughters aren’t interested in how they frame themselves to their mothers—and vice versa. I just wish Tannen does her next book on fathers and sons. Deborah?

Reader Comments


October 10, 2009 4:45 PM

thank u but i cold not watch the video but i wish u could assist me in trusses and frames

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Want to stop talking about innovation and learn how to make it work for you? Bruce Nussbaum takes you deep into the latest thinking about innovation and design with daily scoops, provocative perspectives and case studies. Nussbaum is at the center of a global conversation on the growing discipline of innovation and the deepening field of design thinking. Read him to discover what social networking works—and what doesn’t. Discover where service innovation is going and how experience design is shaping up. Learn which schools are graduating the most creative talent and which consulting firms are the hottest. And get his take on what the smartest companies are doing in the U.S., Asia and Europe, far ahead of the pack.

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