Grant McCracken

Grant McCracken

Leading Cultural Anthropologist

Grant McCracken looks at the places where culture and commerce, anthropology and economics meet. Through his highly-customized presentations, he provides audiences with a comprehensive―but incisive―review of contemporary culture, and strategies for managing it, for clients such as Microsoft, Philips, Coca-Cola, Bertelsmann, and Intel.

McCracken is the author of several books including Culture and Consumption; Culture and Consumption II; Plenitude; Big Hair; The Long Interview; Flock and Flow; Transformations; Chief Culture Officer; and Culturematic.

McCracken has been the director of the Institute of Contemporary Culture at the Royal Ontario Museum; a senior lecturer at the Harvard Business School; a visiting scholar at the University of Cambridge; and a research affiliate at MIT.  He consults widely, including for the Ford Motor Company, the Ford Foundation, Netflix, the Boston Book Festival, Diageo, IBM, the Coca-Cola company, Nike, and the White House.

He holds a PhD in cultural anthropology from the University of Chicago.

Saving CPG

The Consumer Packaged Goods industry is suffering several challenges. Small competitors work the niche. The artisanal trend continues to transform what consumers want. This talk looks at how the CPG players can take advantage of their size and deep learning to respond.

For marketers, branders, designers, planners, strategists, and cultural creatives working in the CPG domain.

The Revolution in Storytelling

The way we tell stories and listen to them is changing dramatically. Here Grant draws on his work for Netflix and the entertainment industry to identify the new dos and donts of storytelling in the worlds of advertising, social, marketing, and PR.

For people in the worlds of advertising, social, design, policy making, marketing, and PR.

Retail in Decline: How to Revive Main Street and the Mall

Amazon is now threatening to destroy face-to-face retail. This talk is designed to show how we can reinvent retail to fight off the Amazon challenge. There are lots of options here, but we have to start now…and work fast.

For anyone in retail.

Using Anthropology, Ethnography and Culture

The world is suddenly infatuated with anthropology and ethnography as a way to discover what the consumer wants and where the world is headed. Some of this work is just plain bad. Grant is an acknowledged pioneer and innovator in this space and there may be no better guide to how you can use anthropology, ethnography and culture. Grant will show you how to use anthropology to see culture from 30,000 feet. How to use ethnography in a face to face interview. And how to map culture and predict how it will change.

For marketers, branders, designers, planners, strategists, policy makers, and cultural creatives.

Boomers on the Verge

As Boomers pass their 65-year mark, many are reinventing themselves. They have 30 years left and they are making a new set of decisions about who they are and how they want to live. This has huge implications for the financial, entertainment and health industries. Grant will draw upon his work in all three domains to establish to new rules of engagement with Boomers.

For anyone who is now working with the Boomer segment.

What Happened to the Middle of American Politics?

This is a report from the front line of American culture: a look at the forces that have driven both political parties to extreme positions. This talk uses work that Grantdid for the Ford Foundation and reported to the White House. It’s a great opportunity for marketers and culture creatives to think about how to negotiate polarized Western cultures.

For marketers, designers, policy makers, and cultural creatives.

The Rise of Diversity: How the Organization Can Celebrate Difference

The corporate culture used to be a little like a military and religious organization. It was hierarchical, top down, command and control, and mostly run by men of middle age. That’s all over. This talk is about how the corporate culture can be reengineered to use difference to make the organization smarter, more nimble, better at reading the world and responding to it.

For anyone in HR or management.