Hi, I'm Hester Bruikman - Pagán

UX researcher

Recreational photographer at hesterbruikman.smugmug.com/
Married to Brian Pagán, Founder & UX Coach at The Greatness Studio
Member of The Greatness Studio community on Slack

I’m a freelance UX researcher with 10 years of experience helping product teams prioritize features and improve their user interface. Currently focused on understanding how to best support communities with decentralized technologies.

I am a mixture between a psychologist and interaction designer. I gained experience at Philips, ING, and Facebook working with excellent, established design teams, as well as with organizations in the process of embedding design and/or research. I’ve worked in a variety domains: (medical) Healthcare, Assisted Living, Financial services, Consumer Electronics, Advertisement, Government, Decentralized web technologies and cryptocurrency.

In most engagements I collaborate closely with a product manager, developer and designer to define user requirements and translate these into system requirements and user interfaces.

I believe that I deliver my best work when I have control over the place and time at which I work. I strive to work location independent and to have meaningful interactions. I’m intrigued by the sight of bread rising, long hikes along the Grand Route, the web3 revolution, sustainable energy and housing, and foraging.

Frequently asked questions

What is UX research?

A systemic approach to understand people’s needs, motivations and problems, and the potential of products and services to address these.

What is a UX researcher?

An individual who’s objective is to understand the above, without an immediate desire to define a solution. Typically a UX researcher is someone with a background in Psychology, Cognitive Science, Anthropology, Ethnography, Communication, Marketing, Human Factors, Design. There are many flavors.

When can I use a UX researcher?

At any time. A UX researcher is the linking pin to people using your product or service, the earlier a UX researcher is involved, the faster you can learn and adapt course. A well rounded UX researcher uses a pallet of methods that fit with different stages of product development. Running from exploratory research to evaluating a product or service post-launch. There are specializations. Some UX researchers focus more on the fuzzy front end of gathering user needs, others focus more on usability or even A/B testing.

What else do I need?


  • Commitment to change. UX research only has value if there is a commitment to act on the results.
  • People. Involving real people with real needs, motivations, and problems for which your product or services is intended, is the only way to cover all your bases.
  • Time. Your and your team’s time. First hand experiences are much more impactful than any report or quote. If you want to act on the results of UX research it helps to have everybody on board from the start. Join for interviews or follow them through a videostream. Also, it’s a shared experience that brings a team together.
  • Data. Bring any relevant information to the table that you already have.


Do you also design?
If requested, I can deliver conceptual designs for services and user interfaces. For more extensive UX design and strategy, I recommend and collaborate with my husband Brian Pagán.
What if I want to learn how to do UX research myself?

That's awesome. I offer mentoring, training and workshops through The Greatness Studio

This can be valuable for individuals, but also for businesses that are looking to embed people-centered design in their processes.