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UX Researcher | Designer | Consultant | Writer
Brittany Osbourne Derenoncourt, PhD, MFA
I currently work as a Research Lead at WhatsApp, after serving as a Research Lead for Meta's small business advertisers. I also worked as a UX Researcher in the Health IT industry for several years, and I independently researched on 0 to 1 products, particularly with natural hair and beauty startups. As an anthropologist turned UXer, I'm constantly intrigued by how (1) humans interact with each other and the things they create, (2) what and who shapes the interactive process, and (3) what are the physical and sociocultural benefits, challenges, and tradeoffs of such interaction. My career to date holistically examines these questions around what I call human-stuff interaction.
My work is highly interdisciplinary, drawing upon my rigorous international training in the United States, Europe, and West Africa in social science, the fine arts, and digital science and technology. As a principal investigator and project manager, I have designed and conducted E2E research projects, with methodologies foundational to anthropology, marketing, human factors, and user experience (UX). I have presented on my research and creative work throughout the United States as well as internationally.
Beyond research, I am heavily involved in the ancestry DNA testing and reconnection space. Currently, I serve as an Ambassador for DNA Tested Africans, a non-profit that’s tested over 250 continental and 1st generation Africans to help African Diasporans (who DNA test) reconnect with their African relatives. I’m also a founding member of UmuAda Igbo Nigeria and in the Diaspora DNA Branch, and belong to DNA projects dedicated to native Caribbean heritage.
I’m a medical anthropologist by trade, earning my PhD from the University of Florida. Go Gators! I also hold Masters in Creative Writing and Digital Arts and Sciences, the latter was co-founded by UF's Colleges of Fine Arts and Engineering.
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