The Financial Tour: Methods for Studying Sensitive Financial Questions
Personal finances affect many things in life: your health, the education of your children, your leisure activities and diet. But that pervasive nature of finances can make them hard to characterize and understandda task made more difficult because of privacy taboos around discussing money. In this chapter, I present the techniques and tools we used to understand participants’ financial practices by creating financial maps, using index cards containing financial events, and studying physical financial tools from wallets to spreadsheets. I discuss best practices for interviews around sensitive topics such as practices to build consensus, interest, and engagement. Other lessons in this chapter focus on the sensitive nature of financial information and ways to explicitly build trust with participants.