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Computer Supported Cooperative Work 23

Editors:Kjeld Schmidt
Dates:2014
Volume:23
Publisher:Springer Verlag
Standard No:ISSN 0925-9724
Papers:23
Links:springerlink.metapress.com | Table of Contents
  1. JCSCW 2014-02 Volume 23 Issue 1
  2. JCSCW 2014-04 Volume 23 Issue 2
  3. JCSCW 2014-06 Volume 23 Issue 3
  4. JCSCW 2014-12 Volume 23 Issue 4

JCSCW 2014-02 Volume 23 Issue 1

Practices of Stigmergy in the Building Process BIBAKFull-Text 1-19
  Lars Rune Christensen
Actors coordinate their cooperative efforts by acting on the evidence of work previously accomplished. Based on a field study this article introduces the concept of stigmergy to the analysis of coordinative practices in the building process. It distinguishes between practices of stigmergy, articulation work and awareness practices. Stigmergy is understood as coordination achieved by acting directly on the evidence of work previously accomplished by others. The article provides descriptions of stigmergy in the building process i.e. in design as well as construction work. It seeks to (1) introduce the concept of stigmergy to CSCW, (2) to delimit this concept in regard to other concepts of coordination such as articulation work and awareness and (3) to provide descriptions of practices of stigmergy in the building process and, in this capacity, to help explain how complex large-scale cooperative work is coordinated.
Keywords: coordination; building process; stigmergy; articulation work; awareness
Latent Users in an Online User-Generated Content Community BIBAKFull-Text 21-50
  Alcides Velasquez; Rick Wash; Cliff Lampe; Tor Bjornrud
Online communities depend on the persistent contributions of heterogeneous users with diverse motivations and ways of participating. As these online communities exist over time, it is possible that users change the way in which they contribute to the site. Through interviews with 31 long-term members of a user-generated content community who have decreased their participation on the site, we examined the meaning that these users gave to their contribution and how their new participation patterns related to their initial motivations. We complement the reader-to-leader framework (Preece and Shneiderman: AIS Transactions on Human-Computer Interaction, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 13-32, 2009) by propounding the concept of latent user to understand decreasing content contribution and user life-cycles in online communities. We showed that even though latent users decrease their content contribution, their participation becomes more selective and remained consistent with initial motivations to participate.
Keywords: content contribution in online communities; motivations to contribute; latent users; online communities; online participation; reader-to-leader framework
Big Board: Teleconferencing Over Maps for Shared Situational Awareness BIBAKFull-Text 51-74
  Jefferson Heard; Sidharth Thakur; Jessica Losego; Ken Galluppi
Collaborative technologies for information sharing are an invaluable resource for emergency managers to respond to and manage highly dynamic events such as natural disasters and other emergencies. However, many standard collaboration tools can be limited either because they provide passive presentation and dissemination of information, or because they are targeted towards highly specific usage scenarios that require considerable training to use the tools. We present a real-time gather and share system called "Big Board" which facilitates collaboration over maps. The Big Board is an open-source, web based, real time visual collaborative environment that runs on all modern web browsers and uses open-source web standards developed by the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) and WorldWideWeb Consortium (W3C). An evaluation of Big Board was conducted by school representatives in North Carolina for use in situational understanding for school closure decisions during winter weather events. The decision to close schools has major societal impacts and is one that is usually made based on how well a teenage driver could handle wintry precipitation on a road. Collecting information on the conditions of roads is especially critical, however gathering and sharing of this information within a county can be difficult. Participants in the study found the Big Board intuitive and useful for sharing real time information, such as road conditions and temperatures, leading up to and during a winter storm scenario. We have adapted the Big Board to manage risks and hazards during other types of emergencies such as tropical storm conditions.
Keywords: geospatial collaboration; web teleconferencing; information management; open source tool; emergency management; situation awareness
Boundary-Object Trimming: On the Invisibility of Medical Secretaries' Care of Records in Healthcare Infrastructures BIBAKFull-Text 75-110
  Claus Bossen; Lotte Groth Jensen; Flemming Witt Udsen
As health care IT gradually develops from being stand-alone systems towards integrated infrastructures, the work of various groups, occupations and units is likely to become more tightly integrated and dependent upon each other. Hitherto, the focus within health care has been upon the two most prominent professions, physicians and nurses, but most likely other non-clinical occupations will become relevant for the design and implementation of health care IT. In this paper, we describe the cooperative work of medical secretaries at two hospital departments, based on a study evaluating a comprehensive electronic health record (EHR) shortly after implementation. The subset of data on medical secretaries includes observation (11 hours), interviews (three individual and one group) and survey data (31 of 250 respondents were medical secretaries). We depict medical secretaries' core task as to take care of patient records by ensuring that information is complete, up to date, and correctly coded, while they also carry out information gatekeeping and articulation work. The importance of these tasks to the departments' work arrangements was highlighted by the EHR implementation, which also coupled the work of medical secretaries more tightly to that of other staff, and led to task drift among professions. Medical secretaries have been relatively invisible to health informatics and CSCW, and we propose the term 'boundary-object trimming' to foreground and conceptualize one core characteristic of their work: maintenance and optimization of the EHR as a boundary object. Finally, we reflect upon the hitherto relative invisibility of medical secretaries which may be related to issues of gender and power.
Keywords: boundary objects; cooperative work; electronic health records; gender; health care; medical secretaries; invisible work; non-clinical occupations

Book Review

"Heritage and Social Media. Understanding Heritage in a Participatory Culture," edited by Elisa Giaccardi BIBAFull-TextPublisher Page 111-114
  Dirk vom Lehn
With Heritage and Social Media. Understanding Heritage in a Participatory Culture Elisa Giaccardi has produced an edited volume that contributes to the existing body of studies concerned with museum and heritage sites presented in this journal and at CSCW and CHI conferences. The articles in the book focus on the production, management and exhibition of heritage, both by 'conventional' modern institutions such as museums, and by people in their day-to-day technology-enhanced activities. Its overall thesis is that the increasing pervasiveness of social media confronts organisations and institutions with opportunities for renewing themselves and with challenges that put at risk their very existence.
"Ethnography and Virtual Worlds: A Handbook of Method", by Tom Boellstorff, Bonnie Nardi, Celia Pearce & T. L. Taylor BIBAFull-TextPublisher Page 115-118
  Jeni Paay
A first very positive quality of this book is that it exactly delivers what it promises to be -- a handbook of method about ethnography and virtual worlds -- and does so in an accessible and enjoyable way. The form factor of the publication, as a handbook sized artefact, has been achieved, and so has the authors' objective that readers should be able to use it to guide ethnographic methods for the study of virtual worlds -- both when the reader is considering ethnography as a possible method for exploring the culture of a virtual world and when they are immersed in the actual study of one. The back cover of this book states that it is a practical guide for students, teachers, designers and scholars interested in using ethnographic methods for studying virtual worlds. I can confirm this to be the case, as I myself take on all of these roles in my professional life, and can see how this book could be a useful guide for the intended stakeholders.

JCSCW 2014-04 Volume 23 Issue 2

Work Practices, Nomadicity and the Mediational Role of Technology

Work Practices, Nomadicity and the Mediational Role of Technology BIBFull-Text 119-136
  Luigina Ciolfi; Aparecido Fabiano Pinatti de Carvalho
Understanding Constellations of Technologies in Use in a Collaborative Nomadic Setting BIBAKFull-Text 137-161
  Chiara Rossitto; Cristian Bogdan; Kerstin Severinson-Eklundh
This paper describes how people make sense of and use constellations of technologies in a nomadic setting, and it illustrates how maintaining and orchestrating a variety of applications and devices becomes an essential part of nomadic practices. The data were collected over a period of 3 years at a technical university by means of two field studies. Particular attention is drawn to how the situated orchestration of devices and applications within a group's constellation reflects university students' concern to manage their projects at a number of locations, as well as issues of time and circulation of resources. The analysis brings into focus how constellations of technologies emerge and dissolve within collaborative ensembles that only exist for the duration of a project, and how this can cause appropriation issues within groups.
Keywords: collaboration; nomadicity; place; constellation of technologies; field studies
Nomadicity and the Care of Place -- on the Aesthetic and Affective Organization of Space in Freelance Creative Work BIBAKFull-Text 163-183
  Michael Liegl
While information and communication technology enables freelancers to work "anytime anywhere", it has become apparent that not all places seem to be equally suitable for their work. Drawing from CSCW literature on the practical accomplishment of mobile work and theoretical literature on creativity, insights from ethnographic studies in New York, Berlin and Wiesbaden are discussed. The paper follows workers in their everyday attempts to seek out and enact work environments, which enable them to be creative and productive. In these processes, mobility features both as a problem and a resource. The search for the right place makes these workers restless, but sometimes restlessness and nomadicity can inspire creativity. Similarly, new mobile, social and collaborative technologies allow a new balancing of solitude and sociality. I call this emerging nexus of practices which entails aesthetic, affective, social and socio-political dimensions the care of place. A conjoint theoretical and empirical analysis aims to draw attention to everyday lived practices of nomadicity and the care of place in a wider discursive and socio-political context to inform CSCW design.
Keywords: care (of place); creativity; dispositif of mobility; nomadicity; place; sociability; sociology of work; space
Officing: Mediating Time and the Professional Self in the Support of Nomadic Work BIBAKFull-Text 185-204
  Justine Humphry
Today's mobile knowledge professionals use a diversity of digital technologies to perform their work. Much of this daily technology consumption involves a variety of activities of articulation, negotiation and repair to support their work as well as their nomadic practices. This article argues that these activities mediate and structure social relations, going beyond the usual attention given to this work as a support requirement of cooperative and mobile work. Drawing on cultural approaches to technology consumption, the article introduces the concept of 'officing' and its three main categories of connecting, configuring and synchronizing, to show how these activities shape and are shaped by the relationship that workers have with their time and sense of professional self. This argument is made through research of professionals at a municipal council in Sydney and at a global telecommunications firm with regional headquarters in Melbourne, trialling a smartphone prototype. This research found that while officing fuels a sense of persistent time pressure and collapse of work and life boundaries, it also supports new temporal and spatial senses and opportunities for maintaining professional identities.
Keywords: officing; 'anywhere, anytime'; nomadic practices; infrastructure support; time pressure; professional identity
Nomadic Work as Life-Story Plot BIBAKFull-Text 205-221
  Barbara Czarniawska
Interviews aimed at a reconstruction of working-life stories of 'digital immigrants' and 'digital natives' revealed, unsurprisingly, that such stories are emplotted with the aid of existing repertoires. What is more surprising, though, is the fact that 'nomadic plots' can be borrowed from opposite political repertoires, and that they cease serving as effective interpretative templates in the face of changing circumstances, such as the financial crisis. A focus group consisting of alleged self-described nomads indicated that the choice of this life plot is related to such matters as family circumstances and political situations during early childhood, as well as a present gender-mitigated family situation. Other studies focusing on the younger generation reveal that nomadic work as a life story plot does not lose its attraction. Narrative analysis suggests, however, that the notions of 'digital immigrants' and 'nomadic work' are more complex than their use in the media may suggest.
Keywords: Nomadic work; Mobile workers; Nomadic computing; Life stories; Emplotment
Nomadic Work: Romance and Reality. A Response to Barbara Czarniawska's 'Nomadic Work as Life-Story Plot' BIBAKFull-Text 223-238
  Monika Büscher
This article takes departure in Barbara Czarniawska's discussion of 'Nomadic Work as Life-Story Plot'. It contextualises her analysis of actors' interpretations of nomadic work with a bi-focal review of the ambiguous realities of these phenomena. Firstly, an examination of key aspects of the socio-economic and political context of nomadic work in global neoliberal economies reveals precarious conditions that cloud romantic interpretations of nomadicity. Secondly, a review of studies of everyday practices of nomadic work shows how neoliberal, but also alternative futures are enacted through creative appropriation of collaborative technologies. One example is the work of digital 'disaster deck' volunteers and its potential for the mobilization of 'rapid, highly localized assistance' through closer collaboration between a distributed crowd, local communities, and official emergency responders (Starbird and Palen 2013). This and other examples suggest emergent new practices and politics of dwelling in mobility that are focused on sociality and collaboration, straddling virtual and physical commons. The twin critique developed in this response can augment narrative analysis to inform more integrated CSCW innovation that challenges the 'brave new world of work'.
Keywords: CSCW; design; neoliberalism; nomadic work; commons

Book Review

"Enterprise Mobility: Tiny Technology with Global Impact on Work," by Carsten Sørensen BIBAFull-TextPublisher Page 239-243
  Aparecido Fabiano Pinatti de Carvalho
Exploring issues surrounding the use of computer technologies in work settings and their impact upon work practices has been a central tenet of CSCW research since its very beginning. The topic of this book, enterprise mobility, is therefore of interest to the field, for it includes the use of mobile information and communication technologies (ICTs) for mobile work practices and related issues. Carsten Sørensen's "Enterprise Mobility" is a comprehensive introduction to the subject intended both to guide those first approaching it and to raise questions that might be further explored in contribution to the field for more knowledgeable readers.

JCSCW 2014-06 Volume 23 Issue 3

The Day-to-Day Co-Production of Ageing in Place BIBAKFull-Text 245-267
  Rob Procter; Trisha Greenhalgh; Joe Wherton; Paul Sugarhood; Mark Rouncefield; Sue Hinder
We report findings from a study that set out to explore the experience of older people living with assisted living technologies and care services. We find that successful 'ageing in place' is socially and collaboratively accomplished -- 'co-produced' -- day-to-day by the efforts of older people, and their formal and informal networks of carers (e.g. family, friends, neighbours). First, we reveal how 'bricolage' allows care recipients and family members to customise assisted living technologies to individual needs. We argue that making customisation easier through better design must be part of making assisted living technologies 'work'. Second, we draw attention to the importance of formal and informal carers establishing and maintaining mutual awareness of the older person's circumstances day-to-day so they can act in a concerted and coordinated way when problems arise. Unfortunately, neither the design of most current assisted living technologies, nor the ways care services are typically configured, acknowledges these realities of ageing in place. We conclude that rather than more 'advanced' technologies, the success of ageing in place programmes will depend on effortful alignments in the technical, organisational and social configuration of support.
Keywords: bricolage; co-production; assisted living; ageing in place; telecare; telehealth
Sensework BIBAKFull-Text 269-298
  Torgeir K. Haavik
This article explores the nature of sociotechnical work in safety-critical operations as it unfolds in settings that are characterised by multidisciplinary interpretative work in high-tech environments, where direct access to the phenomena of interest is restricted and the dependence on sensor data and model support is high. The type of work that is described in the article -- labelled 'Integrated Operations' in the petroleum industry -- ahas some characteristic features that it shares with many other work settings which are becoming increasingly typical for managing complicated, sociotechnical work in our times. Sensework denotes a type of sociotechnical work in safety-critical operations where groups of professionals try to put together pieces of information to create a coherent picture to give meaning to familiar and unfamiliar situations. Although related to, sensework should not be confused with sensemaking; sensework is described as both something more and something less than sensemaking. Sensework is described as unfolding along three axes: a cognitive axis, a strategic axis and an organisational axis. Furthermore, through its fluctuation along these axes, sensework points towards two different views of work: work as imagined and work as done. Epistemologically, these dimensions may be understood as rationalist and constructivist dimensions of safe operations. Future research on sensework will hopefully challenge and develop both the empirical scope and the conceptual descriptions in this paper. The delimitation to safety-critical work in this article and the way in which sensework is conceptualised should not be seen as categorical constraints; these are starting points, not end points.
Keywords: Safety-critical operations; Sensework; Sociotechnical work; Work as imagined; Work as done
Interactional Order and Constructed Ways of Seeing with Touchless Imaging Systems in Surgery BIBAKFull-Text 299-337
  Kenton O'Hara; Gerardo Gonzalez; Graeme Penney; Abigail Sellen; Robert Corish; Helena Mentis; Andreas Varnavas; Antonio Criminisi; Mark Rouncefield; Neville Dastur; Tom Carrell
While surgical practices are increasingly reliant on a range of digital imaging technologies, the ability for clinicians to interact and manipulate these digital representations in the operating theatre using traditional touch based interaction devices is constrained by the need to maintain sterility. To overcome these concerns with sterility, a number of researchers are have been developing ways of enabling interaction in the operating theatre using touchless interaction techniques such as gesture and voice to allow clinicians control of the systems. While there have been important technical strides in the area, there has been little in the way of understanding the use of these touchless systems in practice. With this in mind we present a touchless system developed for use during vascular surgery. We deployed the system in the endovascular suite of a large hospital for use in the context of real procedures. We present findings from a study of the system in use focusing on how, with touchless interaction, the visual resources were embedded and made meaningful in the collaborative practices of surgery. In particular we discuss the importance of direct and dynamic control of the images by the clinicians in the context of talk and in the context of other artefact use as well as the work performed by members of the clinical team to make themselves sensable by the system. We discuss the broader implications of these findings for how we think about the design, evaluation and use of these systems.
Keywords: touchless interaction; operating theatre; sterility; collaborative practices of surgery; gestural interaction; work practice

JCSCW 2014-12 Volume 23 Issue 4

Crisis Informatics and Collaboration

Crisis Informatics and Collaboration: A Brief Introduction BIBAFull-Text 339-345
  Volkmar Pipek; Sophia B. Liu; Andruid Kerne
Crisis Informatics from a CSCW Point of ViewMajor crises and disasters, like the September 11th attacks, Hurricane Katrina, and the Sendai earthquake, constitute a ripe domain for CSCW concerns, as they involve collaboration among individuals, organizations and society as a whole. CSCW issues arise across all phases of emergency management, from initial planning and preparedness, through the detection of a crisis event, and into the response, recovery and mitigation phases. In many crisis scenarios, the quality of the collaboration among governmental, professional, volunteer, and citizen responders in crisis management greatly affects the impact on loss of lives and property.
Information and Expertise Sharing in Inter-Organizational Crisis Management BIBAKFull-Text 347-387
  Benedikt Ley; Thomas Ludwig; Volkmar Pipek; Dave Randall; Christian Reuter; Torben Wiedenhoefer
Emergency or crisis management, as is well-attested, is a complex management problem. A variety of agencies need to collaborate and coordinate in real-time and with an urgency that is not always present in other domains. It follows that accurate information of varying kinds (e.g. geographical and weather conditions; available skills and expertises; state-of-play; current dispositions and deployments) needs to be made available in a timely fashion to the organizations and individuals who need it. By definition, this information will come from a number of sources both within and across organizations. Large-scale events in particular necessitate collaboration with other organizations. Of course, plans and processes exist to deal with such events but the number of dynamically changing factors as well as the high number of heterogeneous organizations and the high degree of interdependency involved make it impossible to plan for all contingencies. A degree of ongoing improvisation, which typically occurs by means of a variety of information and expertise sharing practices, therefore becomes necessary. This, however, faces many challenges, such as different organizational cultures, distinct individual and coordinative work practices and discrete information systems. Our work entails an examination of the practices of information and expertise sharing, and the obstacles to it, in inter-organizational crisis management. We conceive of this as a design case study, such that we examine a problem area and its scope; conduct detailed enquiries into practice in that area, and provide design recommendations for implementation and evaluation. First, we will present the results of an empirical study of collaboration practices between organizations and public authorities with security responsibilities such as the police, fire departments, public administration and electricity network operators, mainly in scenarios of medium to large power outages in Germany. Based on these results, we will describe a concept, which was designed, implemented and evaluated as a system prototype, in two iterations. While the first iteration focuses on situation assessment, the second iteration also includes inter-organizational collaboration functionalities. Based on the findings of our evaluations with practitioners, we will discuss how to support collaboration with a particular focus on information and expertise sharing.
Keywords: Information management; Expertise sharing; Collaboration; Design case study; Inter-organizational crisis management; CSCW
Crisis Crowdsourcing Framework: Designing Strategic Configurations of Crowdsourcing for the Emergency Management Domain BIBAKFull-Text 389-443
  Sophia B. Liu
Crowdsourcing is not a new practice but it is a concept that has gained substantial attention during recent disasters. Drawing from previous work in the crisis informatics, disaster sociology, and computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW) literature, this paper first explains recent conceptualizations of crowdsourcing and how crowdsourcing is a way of leveraging disaster convergence. The CSCW concept of "articulation work" is introduced as an interpretive frame for extracting the salient dimensions of "crisis crowdsourcing." Then, a series of vignettes are presented to illustrate the evolution of crisis crowdsourcing that spontaneously emerged after the 2010 Haiti earthquake and evolved to more established forms of public engagement during crises. The best practices extracted from the vignettes clarified the efforts to formalize crisis crowdsourcing through the development of innovative interfaces designed to support the articulation work needed to facilitate spontaneous volunteer efforts. Extracting these best practices led to the development of a conceptual framework that unpacks the key dimensions of crisis crowdsourcing. The Crisis Crowdsourcing Framework is a systematic, problem-driven approach to determining the why, who, what, when, where, and how aspects of a crowdsourcing system. The framework also draws attention to the social, technological, organizational, and policy (STOP) interfaces that need to be designed to manage the articulation work involved with reducing the complexity of coordinating across these key dimensions. An example of how to apply the framework to design a crowdsourcing system is offered with a discussion on the implications for applying this framework as well as the limitations of this framework. Innovation is occurring at the social, technological, organizational, and policy interfaces enabling crowdsourcing to be operationalized and integrated into official products and services.
Keywords: Articulation work; Conceptual framework; Crisis informatics; Crisis mapping; Crowdsourcing; Crowdwork; Digital volunteers; Disasters; Emergency management; Human computation; Information management; Social media
Journalists as Crowdsourcerers: Responding to Crisis by Reporting with a Crowd BIBAKFull-Text 445-481
  Dharma Dailey; Kate Starbird
Widespread adoption of new information communication technologies (ICTs) is disrupting traditional models of news production and distribution. In this rapidly changing media landscape, the role of the journalist is evolving. Our research examines how professional journalists within a rural community impacted by Hurricane Irene successfully negotiated a new role for themselves, transforming their journalistic practice to serve in a new capacity as leaders of an online volunteer community. We describe an emergent organization of media professionals, citizen journalists, online volunteers, and collaborating journalistic institutions that provided real-time event coverage. In this rural context, where communications infrastructure is relatively uneven, this ad hoc effort bridged gaps in ICT infrastructure to unite its audience. In this paper, we introduce a new perspective for characterizing these information-sharing activities: the "human powered mesh network" extends the concept of a mesh network to include human actors in the movement of information. Our analysis shows how journalists played a key role in this network, and facilitated the movement of information to those who needed it. These findings also note a contrast between how HCI researchers are designing crowdsourcing platforms for news production and how crowdsourcing efforts are forming during disaster events, suggesting an alternative approach to designing for emergent collaborations in this context.
Keywords: crisis informatics; crowdsourcing; crowd work; digital volunteerism; online communities; open journalism; participatory journalism; social computing; social media; infrastructure
Good Enough is Good Enough: Overcoming Disaster Response Organizations' Slow Social Media Data Adoption BIBAKFull-Text 483-512
  Andrea H. Tapia; Kathleen Moore
Organizations that respond to disasters hold unreasonable standards for data arising from technology-enabled citizen contributions. This has strong negative potential for the ability of these responding organizations to incorporate these data into appropriate decision points. We argue that the landscape of the use of social media data in crisis response is varied, with pockets of use and acceptance among organizations. In this paper we present findings from interviews conducted with representatives from large international disaster response organizations concerning their use of social media data in crisis response. We found that emergency responders already operate with less than reliable, or "good enough," information in offline practice, and that social media data are useful to responders, but only in specific crisis situations. Also, responders do use social media, but only within their known community and extended network. This shows that trust first begins with people and not data. Lastly, we demonstrate the barriers used by responding organizations have gone beyond discussions of trustworthiness and data quality to that of more operational issues.
Keywords: humanitarian; relief; NGO; disaster; crowdsourcing; trust
Identifying Seekers and Suppliers in Social Media Communities to Support Crisis Coordination BIBAKFull-Text 513-545
  Hemant Purohit; Andrew Hampton; Shreyansh Bhatt; Valerie L. Shalin; Amit P. Sheth; John M. Flach
Effective crisis management has long relied on both the formal and informal response communities. Social media platforms such as Twitter increase the participation of the informal response community in crisis response. Yet, challenges remain in realizing the formal and informal response communities as a cooperative work system. We demonstrate a supportive technology that recognizes the existing capabilities of the informal response community to identify needs (seeker behavior) and provide resources (supplier behavior), using their own terminology. To facilitate awareness and the articulation of work in the formal response community, we present a technology that can bridge the differences in terminology and understanding of the task between the formal and informal response communities. This technology includes our previous work using domain-independent features of conversation to identify indications of coordination within the informal response community. In addition, it includes a domain-dependent analysis of message content (drawing from the ontology of the formal response community and patterns of language usage concerning the transfer of property) to annotate social media messages. The resulting repository of annotated messages is accessible through our social media analysis tool, Twitris. It allows recipients in the formal response community to sort on resource needs and availability along various dimensions including geography and time. Thus, computation indexes the original social media content and enables complex querying to identify contents, players, and locations. Evaluation of the computed annotations for seeker-supplier behavior with human judgment shows fair to moderate agreement. In addition to the potential benefits to the formal emergency response community regarding awareness of the observations and activities of the informal response community, the analysis serves as a point of reference for evaluating more computationally intensive efforts and characterizing the patterns of language behavior during a crisis.
Keywords: coordination; crisis informatics; cooperative crisis response; crisis response coordination; organizational sensemaking; psycholinguistics; spatio-temporal analysis; twitris; seeker-supplier behavior; semantic web
Information Sharing Among Disaster Responders -- An Interactive Spreadsheet-Based Collaboration Approach BIBAKFull-Text 547-583
  Athula Ginige; Luca Paolino; Marco Romano; Monica Sebillo; Genoveffa Tortora; Giuliana Vitiello
Recent natural disasters have led crisis management organizations to revise their protocols so as to rely on the contribution of a wider range of actors, including simple citizens as well as expert operators, to support decision making activities. Reliable and timely information sharing among members of distributed teams of disaster responders has become paramount for the success of the overall crisis management process. In this paper we propose a crisis management system based on spreadsheet-mediated collaboration among on-site responders and decision makers. To share data a common spreadsheet artifact has been developed by using a participatory design approach which is accessed through mobile user interfaces. The evaluation results showed that the use of the spreadsheet artifact has resulted in more effective decision making relating to set of earthquake management scenarios in high-risk areas located in Italy.
Keywords: Computer-supported collaborative work; Participatory design; Mobile interfaces