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Drew Walker, PhD

Innovative experience developing and leading high-level projects toward successful implementation, including:

 GROUNDBREAKING RESEARCH

  • Developing more effective approaches to: integrating care for groups in need of healthcare solutions, providing human services and supports, employing international development and aid, and protecting vulnerable persons via law enforcement and security organizations;
  • Integrating ethnographic and other research results into improving textual analysis, social network analysis, knowledge management, and information design in each of these areas;
  • Creating high-end, state-of-the-art methods and tools for the most actionable use of ethnographic and other qualitative research;
  • Helping develop training materials to make qualitative research knowledge accessible to a wide range of professional throughout different organizations—especially for those developing quantitative studies;
  • Integrating Masters training in performing arts production in creating and using multimedia approaches, from video production, blogging, social networking tools, geocaching and related information systems, to uses of transmedia/multi-platform storytelling;
  • Hands-on, methodical ethnographic research in a variety of sectors that have traditionally been closed to qualitative assessment;

 

RESPONSIBILITY AND LEADERSHIP

  • Building and leading large initiatives in the private, public and nonprofit sectors, from US presidential and congressional campaigns, to work on new national initiatives for foreign governments, to support for US government relief efforts;
  • Independently managing a wide range of research work streams from start to finish;
  • Managing and collaborating with vendors and partners of all sizes and in different industries;
  • Supporting multiple projects at any given time by providing qualitative and decision making method expertise;
  • Remaining flexible in accommodating teams’ work plans and schedules;

 

RELATIONSHIP BUILDING

  • Maintaining a high degree of professional, scientific honesty and integrity in my consulting work so as to make sure all colleagues can best understand the relative importance of research findings;
  • Successfully serving as the main liaison between leaders and key representatives of a very large number of diverse, private, public and nonprofit groups on high stakes projects;
  • Working closely with project leaders, a diverse range of specialists, and business professionals in collaborative, inter-organizational efforts;
  • Being a generative design thinker working with project teams, as well as a coach for teams on timing and resource requirements of qualitative studies;
  • Analyzing research data according to a sometimes complex field of needs, and then synthesizing the information via teams by drawing out the relevant and actionable insights;

 

INNOVATION SKILL SETS

  • Replicating, refining and adding to existing research approaches and tailoring them to the needs of different projects;
  • Supporting business development conversations with clients, especially senior researchers, by championing a philosophy towards innovation research;
  • Having an entrepreneurial spirit and willingness to push new approach further by researching and proposing new methods and vendors;
  • Having experimented with and deployed new techniques of insight generation that are based on, but not bound by academic and traditional group research methodology, most being experiential and visual in nature;
  • Being comfortable engaging internal and external stakeholders with a variety of expertise regarding research approach, design and methodology;
  • Having trained people within different organizations to better understand methodology trade-offs;
  • Having applied all group research methods with a focus on generating actionable insights for business decision-making.

 

Education

Columbia University in the City of New York, Department of Anthropology
PhD (with Distinction) 1998

Columbia University in the City of New York, Department of Anthropology
MPhil 1996

New York University, Tisch School of the Arts, Department of Performance Studies
MA 1993

University of Michigan (Ann Arbor)
AB 1986  (Psychology)