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I am trying implement a solid UX strategy for a new web application. Most of the research methods I’ve read about so far involve existing users of an existing product. Alas I have neither -
Can UX / UCD research methodologies be applied to a new concept or new project? or are they used only to improve existing products?

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    All methods are made for this. You just have to figure out which method will give you most valuable information – Kristiyan Lukanov Dec 4 '16 at 21:58
  • you can use any research method you want. your limitation seems to be not finding existing users because the product doesn't exist. But you would have a type of user in mind, right? – colmcq Dec 5 '16 at 10:42
  • You must have some idea about who this is being targeted at. Most solutions should solve some problem or provide some value for some person. – SteveD Dec 5 '16 at 13:33
  • Thanks, Yes see now that I must proactively source these people who approximate our target audience to carry out interviews, surveys etc. The realisation dawns that its a much bigger task than I had thought. I know the rest can follow on from this once I have a sound basis to develop my personas etc. Time to roll up my sleeves :-) – GlennW Dec 6 '16 at 0:00
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Definitely.

User Centered Design is about building a product around users so you definitely need to a do a lot of user research before that.

Talk to potential users, check out existing users of the competition, create your personas and then the scenarios of use based on these personas, until you can reach your complete user journey and can begin wireframing.

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That which you seek: Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)

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