Online Collaboration and Decision Making to Prepare against a Crisis: A Comparative Study Yasushi Sugimoto, Manchester Bus...
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ISCRAM 2009 PhD Poster Session (Yasushi@Manchester Business School)


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ISCRAM 2009 PhD Poster Session (Yasushi@Manchester Business School)

  1. 1. Online Collaboration and Decision Making to Prepare against a Crisis: A Comparative Study Yasushi Sugimoto, Manchester Business School investigates characteristics of communication, collaboration and decision making processes amongst stakeholders in crisis management. explores applicability of ICT to crisis management to support collaborative practices and multi-criteria decision making. analyses the impact of ICT on societal decision making processes in crisis management, and on communication and decision making from socio-technological perspective by comparing human behaviour in a virtual environment with that in the real world. Research Objectives Methods & Processes Contribution Research Framework This research offers favourable foundations for effective utilisation of ICT in crisis management to promote stakeholders participation. Analysis and comparison of collective decision making processes performed under different communication circumstances will give meaningful implications for the design of decision making processes and the design of ICT as a mediator of communication. The study presents suitable accounts of the impact of ICT application on decision making processes and human decision behaviour. This comparative work establishes a suitable starting point for further cross-national research in crisis management. The study will provide more comprehensive understanding which is not obtained from case study in only one country. Collected data through three stages above are transcribed. Japanese data are translated into English. The transcribed and translated text data are analysed by using the method of discourse analysis. The videoed non-verbal data in FTF workshops are also analysed as a complementary source of discourse. Cross-sectional comparison and analysis is finally performed to draw a general conclusion. Examine online-based discussion and decision making to prepare against a disaster, and confirm its impression and satisfaction compared with daily FTF meetings. Analyse the applicability of scenario approach in online discussion and decision making. Data Analysis T his research … <ul><li>employs a qualitative comparative case study between UK and Japan. </li></ul><ul><li>explores flood in the UK and earthquake in Japan. Two cities in the UK and two cities in Japan are selected as surveyed areas. </li></ul><ul><li>focuses on “pre-disaster (i.e. before an extreme event)” phase. </li></ul><ul><li>uses scenarios as a foundation of communication and decision making. </li></ul><ul><li>identifies and examines stakeholders based on the framework proposed by French, Maule and Papamichail (2009) (1) . </li></ul><ul><li>They classifies stakeholders in terms of “power (influence on the event)” and “stake (influence from the event).” </li></ul><ul><li>The following plot is an example of stakeholder classification in crisis management based on their concept. </li></ul><ul><li>This research considers the stakeholders in the coloured areas in the plot. </li></ul>- In what ways and to what extent do online-based decision making processes differ from actual face-to-face group decision making processes when stakeholders prepare against a particular disaster? - How do Japanese and British crisis management stakeholders such as government officials, experts and NGOs consider and evaluate ICT-supported decision making for disaster mitigation and preparation? - To what extent is the utilisation of scenario helpful to make a decision interactively amongst Japanese or British stakeholders about an unstructured complex problem to prepare against a particular natural disaster? - In what ways is an online community for crisis management designed to encourage participatory process? Sub-questions Stage 1: Interview [ Interviews for experts ] Gain knowledge about recent crisis management situation associated with the targeted events. [ Interviews for other stakeholders ] Understand current crisis management practices and decision making processes, hear of lessons learned from past experiences, and obtain hints for workshops. FTF workshops are a pilot study, so participants are recruited from the students in the University of Manchester instead of actual stakeholders. T his research … Research Questions What role do interactive ICTs such as Web 2.0 play in collaborative practices and decision making when stakeholders prepare against a particular disaster? Overarch question Investigate the processes and the characteristics of actual FTF group discussion and decision making regarding particular disaster mitigation and preparation issues, and compare them with virtual discussion and decision making. Examine the usefulness of scenarios to support discussion and decision making. EMS workshop procedure conforms to FTF workshop procedure. Participants engage in almost same tasks during a workshop. Each workshop is held for a few days, and the participants join the discussion when they are available. They discusses based on a scenario. 3-1: Electronic meeting system (EMS) workshop 3-2: Second Life (SL) workshop Aim Aim Aim Two types of online workshops are organised to compare different communication platforms. 3 workshops for British participants 3 workshops for Japanese participants 6 FTF workshops (Each group has four participants) 5 workshops for British participants 5 workshops for Japanese participants 10 EMS workshops (Each group has around four participants recruited through interview process) (1) French, S., Maule, J. and Papamichail, N. (2009) Decision Behaviour, Analysis and Support, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, England. Two SL workshops are held at Manchester Business School’s SL site. The workshops examine the potential of three-dimensional communication environment provided by the latest ICT. Participants are recruited not only from FTF and EMS workshops but also in SL space. The participants of the workshops consider usefulness of SL-based discussion and availability of SL to crisis management. • Carlisle (UK) : 2005 Carlisle flood • Kobe (Japan): 1995 Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake • Manchester (UK) • Yokohama (Japan) Cities which experienced a severe disaster over the last few decades Cities which did not experience a severe disaster Stake Power General public (outside of the disaster area) Experts Media Government officials Infrastructure companies NGOs Local residents (living in the disaster area) Stage 2: Face-to-face (FTF) workshop Stage 3: Online workshop Pre-workshop questionnaire Introduction Discussion Post-workshop questionnaire 90 minutes • ask about basic attitudes towards group decision making, etc. • read a scenario and understand the task • discuss the given issue and make several decisions • evaluation of the discussion, impression of other participants, etc. 21 interviews in the UK 21 interviews in Japan 42 semi-structured interviews General perspectives In-depth case analysis • Local volunteer (4 people/each area) • Water supply • Electricity (2 people/each area) • City council (4 people/each area) Experts Government officials NGOs (& Local residents) Infrastructure companies • Flood Risk Management Research Consortium [UK] • The Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake Memorial Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution [Japan] (3 people/each country)