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Computer Supported Cooperative Work 20

Editors:Kjeld Schmidt
Publisher:Springer Verlag
Standard No:ISSN 0925-9724
Links:springerlink.metapress.com | Table of Contents
  1. JCSCW 2011-04 Volume 20 Issue 1
  2. JCSCW 2011-06 Volume 20 Issue 3
  3. JCSCW 2011-10 Volume 20 Issue 4
  4. JCSCW 2011-12 Volume 20 Issue 6

JCSCW 2011-04 Volume 20 Issue 1

Bloggers and Readers Blogging Together: Collaborative Co-creation of Political Blogs BIBAKFull-Text 1-36
  Eric P. S. Baumer; Mark Sueyoshi; Bill Tomlinson
A significant amount of research has focused on blogs, bloggers, and blogging. However, relatively little work has examined blog readers, their interactions with bloggers, or their impact on blogging. This paper presents a qualitative study focusing specifically on readers of political blogs to develop a better understanding of readers' interactions with blogs and bloggers. This is the first such study to examine the same blogging activity from both readers' and bloggers' perspectives. Readers' significance and contributions to blogs are examined through a number of themes, including: community membership and participation; the relationship between political ideology, reading habits, and political participation; and differences and similarities between mainstream media (MSM) and blogs. Based on these analyses, this paper argues that blogging is not only a social activity, but is a collaborative process of co-creation in which both bloggers and readers engage. Implications of this finding contribute to the study and understanding of reader participation, to the design of technologies for bloggers and blog readers, and to the development of theoretical understandings of social media.
Keywords: blog readers; blogging; blogs; online activism; political blogs; social media
Variations and Commonalities in Processes of Collaboration: The Need for Multi-Site Workplace Studies BIBAKFull-Text 37-59
  Rebecca Randell; Stephanie Wilson; Peter Woodward
Workplace studies have made a major contribution to the field of CSCW, drawing attention to subtle practices that enable effective collaboration. However, workplace studies typically focus on a single setting, making it difficult to assess the generalisability of the findings. Through a multi-site workplace study, we explore a specific collaborative process, that of the handover which occurs when a patient is transferred from one hospital or ward to another. The study demonstrates that the term 'handover' captures a variety of collaborative practices that vary in both their form and content, reflecting aspects of the setting in which they occur. Multi-site workplace studies are shown to be essential for CSCW, not only generating findings that have relevance beyond a single setting but also focusing attention on aspects of work practice that may otherwise go unnoticed.
Keywords: workplace studies; ethnography; healthcare; handover
Tertiary-Level Telehealth: A Media Space Application BIBAKFull-Text 61-92
  Duncan Roderick Stevenson
A media space provides the communications channels to support the interactions between people at different locations using video and audio links and shared access to data. This paper looks at a telehealth implementation of outpatient consultations for tertiary-level paediatric surgical patients, consultations which exercise a high degree of interpersonal and data-sharing communication between the participants. Framing the telehealth situation as a media space invites the designer of the telehealth system to access a large body of prior work which identifies and discusses many of the issues that will arise in this complex multi-participant telehealth context. This paper presents, as a case study, a two-year project that developed and deployed a whole-of-room telehealth system in partnership with surgeons from The Royal Children's Hospital (RCH), Melbourne, Australia. Based on observations at the hospital and discussions with the surgeons, a descriptive model of the proposed telehealth consultation (and of its deployment in a clinical trial) was developed. This descriptive model became the vehicle for gathering requirements and for design and evaluation of the telehealth system. The evaluation contained four major components: two human factors studies, an observational study of training and process change for the clinicians and a clinical trial of the resulting system. The case study demonstrates the flow of design decisions from concept to deployment. It highlights the gaps that appeared in the descriptive model when the transition was made from the laboratory to deployment in the hospital. The conclusion is that, at this relatively unexplored level of telehealth, there are likely to be gaps in such a descriptive model that are not uncovered by laboratory experiments or by analytic evaluation but emerge only during a clinical trial with actual patients, clinicians and patient data.
Keywords: tertiary telehealth; outpatient consultation; media space application; descriptive model; case study
Artefactual Multiplicity: A Study of Emergency-Department Whiteboards BIBAKFull-Text 93-121
  Pernille Bjørn; Morten Hertzum
Whiteboards are highly important to the work in emergency departments (EDs). As a collaborative technology ED whiteboards are usually placed in the dynamic centre of the ED, and all ED staff will approach the whiteboard regularly to organize their individual yet interdependent work. Currently, digital whiteboards are replacing the ordinary dry-erase whiteboards in EDs, which bring the design and use of whiteboards in ED to our attention. Previous studies have applied the theoretical lenses of common information spaces, coordination, and awareness to the investigation of whiteboard use and design. Based on an ethnographic study of the work practices involving two differently designed ED whiteboards, we found these concepts insufficient to explain one essential characteristic of these heterogeneous artefacts. In this paper, we suggest an additional theoretical concept describing this characteristic of heterogeneous artefacts; namely artefactual multiplicity. Artefactual multiplicity identifies not only the multiple functions of heterogeneous artefacts but also the intricate relations between these multiple functionalities.
Keywords: whiteboard; emergency department; work practice; design; artefactual multiplicity

JCSCW 2011-06 Volume 20 Issue 3

Layers in Sorting Practices: Sorting out Patients with Potential Cancer BIBAKFull-Text 123-153
  Naja Holten Møller; Pernille Bjørn
In the last couple of years, widespread use of standardized cancer pathways has been seen across a range of countries, including Denmark, to improve prognosis of cancer patients. In Denmark, standardized cancer pathways take the form of guidelines prescribing well-defined sequences where steps are planned and pre-booked in order to manage patient trajectories. They are different from typical medical guidelines because they combine both administrative and clinical prescriptions. A key issue related to the enactment of a standardized cancer pathway concerns the decision to initiate a pathway for a particular patient. Due to the limited resources within the Danish healthcare system, initiating cancer pathways for all patients with a remote suspicion of cancer would crash the system, as it would be impossible for healthcare professionals to commit to the prescribed schedules and times defined by the standardized pathways. Thus, sorting patients with symptoms of potential cancer becomes an essential activity. In this paper, we investigate the pre-diagnostic work of sorting patients with symptoms that may potentially be cancer. We identify and conceptualize the sorting practices for potential cancer patients in the pre-diagnostic work as being structured in layers of the interrelated, iterative practices of constructing, organizing, re-organizing, and merging the multiple queues within which each patient is simultaneously situated. We find that the ordering of patients in queues is guided by the formal sorting mechanism, but is handled by informal sorting mechanisms. We identify two informal sorting mechanisms with large impact on the sorting practices, namely subtle categorizing and collective remembering. These informal sorting mechanisms have implications for the design of electronic booking systems because they show that sorting patients before initiating a standardized cancer pathway is not a simple process of deciding on a predefined category that will stipulate particular dates and times. Instead, these informal sorting mechanisms show that the process of sorting patients prior to diagnosis is a collaborative process of merging multiple queues while continuously deciding whether or not a patient's symptoms point to potential cancer.
Keywords: pre-diagnostic work; cancer; sorting; collaboration
Special Theme: Project Management in E-Science: Challenges and Opportunities BIBAKFull-Text 155-163
  Dimitrina Spencer; Ann Zimmerman; David Abramson
In this introduction to the special theme: Project Management in e-Science: Challenges and Opportunities, we argue that the role of project management and different forms of leadership and facilitation can influence significantly the nature of cooperation and its outcomes and deserves further research attention. The quality of social interactions such as communication, cooperation, and coordination, have emerged as key factors in developing and deploying e-science infrastructures and applications supporting large-scale and distributed collaborative scientific research. If software is seen to embody the relational web within which it evolves, and if the processes of software design, development and deployment are seen as ongoing transformations of this dynamic web of relationships between technology, people and environment, the role of managers becomes crucial: it is their responsibility to balance and facilitate the dynamics of these relationships.
Keywords: e-science; cyberinfrastructure; collaboratories; e-infrastructures; usability; interdisciplinary collaboration; agile management; agile development; team-building; project management; leadership; facilitation of e-science teams; software development
Bridging the Disciplinary Divide: Co-Creating Research Ideas in eScience Teams BIBAKFull-Text 165-196
  Deana D. Pennington
Collaboration within eScience teams depends on participants learning each others' disciplinary perspectives sufficiently to generate cross-disciplinary research questions of interest. Participants in new teams often have a limited understanding of each other's research interests; hence early team interactions must revolve around exploratory cross-disciplinary learning and the search for interesting linkages between disciplines. This article investigates group learning and creative processes that impact the efficacy of early team interactions, and the impact of those interactions on the generation of integrated conceptual frameworks from which co-created research problems may emerge. Relevant learning and creativity theories were used to design a management intervention that was applied within the context of an incipient eScience team. Project evaluation indicated that the intervention enabled participants to effectively cross disciplines, integrate conceptualizations, and generate research ideas. The findings suggest that attention to group learning and creativity issues may help overcome some barriers to collaboration on eScience teams.
Keywords: interdisciplinary research; learning and collaboration; problem finding; team science; eScience teams; cyberinfrastructure teams
Agile Project Management: A Case Study of a Virtual Research Environment Development Project BIBAKDOI 197-225
  Rob Procter; Mark Rouncefield; Meik Poschen; Yuwei Lin; Alex Voss
In this paper we use a case study of a project to create a Web 2.0-based, Virtual Research Environment (VRE) for researchers to share digital resources in order to reflect on the principles and practices for embedding eResearch applications within user communities. In particular, we focus on the software development methodologies and project management techniques adopted by the project team in order to ensure that the project remained responsive to changing user requirements without compromising their capacity to keep the project 'on track', i.e. meeting the goals declared in the project proposal within budget and on time. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork, we describe how the project team, whose members are distributed across multiple sites (and often mobile), exploit a repertoire of coordination mechanisms, communication modes and tools, artefacts and structuring devices as they seek to establish the orderly running of the project while following an agile, user-centred development approach.
Keywords: agile software project management; eResearch; Virtual Research Environment; user engagement; Web 2.0

JCSCW 2011-10 Volume 20 Issue 4

Socially Embedded Collaborative Practices: Introduction to a Special Issue based on the COOP 2010 Conference BIBDOI 227-229
  Myriam Lewkowicz; Markus Rohde
"Remain Faithful to the Earth!"*: Reporting Experiences of Artifact-Centered Design in Healthcare BIBAKFull-Text 231-263
  Federico Cabitza
In this paper we report about two design experiences in the domain of healthcare information technology that shed light on the advantages of getting rid of complex and abstract representations of hospital work and of concentrating on the artifacts that practitioners habitually use in their daily practice. We ground our approach in the recent literature on the often unintended shortcomings exhibited by healthcare information systems and propose a lightweight method to support the phases of requirement elicitation and functional design. We then discuss the main requirements expressed in our recent research activity and provide examples of how to address them in terms of modular and reusable design solutions.
Keywords: Artifact-centered design; Requirement elicitation; Healthcare; Domain analysis; System analysis; Hospital work; Healthcare information technology
Analyzing Political Activists' Organization Practices: Findings from a Long Term Case Study of the European Social Forum BIBAKFull-Text 265-304
  Saqib Saeed; Markus Rohde; Volker Wulf
Designing ICT support for transnational networks of social activists is a challenge due to diverse organizational structures, cultural identities, political ideologies, and financial conditions. In this paper we present empirical findings on ICT usage in the organizing process of the European Social Forum (ESF) covering a period of almost 3 years. The European Social Forum is a platform for political activists involved in the anti-globalization movement. During our data collection period, the 5th and 6th European Social Fora were held in Malmo (2008) and Istanbul (2010). The paper describes complex social practices in organizing ESF events. We use the term fragmented meta-coordination to denote this type of practice. Mundane IT applications, such as a mailing list and a content management system, play a central role in enabling different aspects of fragmented meta-coordination. The findings also indicate how lacking resources, organizational distribution, and technical limitations hamper the preparation process and reduce the transparency of political decision making. Our analysis highlights central organizational and technological challenges related to ICT appropriation in transnational networks of social activists.
Keywords: ethnographic case study; technology and the third sector; community informatics; social movements and ICTs; political organizing; meta-coordination
Collocated Social Practices Surrounding Photo Usage in Archaeology BIBAKDOI 305-340
  Marco P. Locatelli; Carla Simone; Viviana Ardesia
Archaeology is a domain of work where photographs play a relevant role: here they are used in different phases of the archaeological work for many purposes, some of which are common to other domains or to home usage (e.g., archiving). We focus our attention on one of the initial phases of the archaeological process, namely excavation, since the related activities use photographs in a very particular way and under the constraints of a very demanding physical setting. Moreover, in this phase the use of digitized photographs is recent, and in their adoption they are interestingly combined with photographs printed on paper. This paper presents the results of a study performed at an archaeological site in the south of Italy: it reports the observed collocated collaborative practices surrounding photographs and discusses these practices to identify some functionalities of a supportive technology.
Keywords: social practicies; collocated; photo-work; photo-talk; photographs; archaeology
The Concept of 'Work' in CSCW BIBADOI 341-401
  Kjeld Schmidt
The scope of CSCW, its focus on work, has been a topic of sporadic debate for many years -- indeed, from the very beginning in the late 1980s. But in recent years the issue has become one of general concern. Most of this debate has been taking place in closed fora such as program committees, editorial boards, and email discussion groups, but over the last few years the debate has been brought out in the open in a few publications, in particular in a programmatic article from 2005 by three esteemed CSCW researchers: Andy Crabtree, Tom Rodden, and Steve Benford. They argue that CSCW should 'move its focus away from work'. Other researchers argue along the same lines. Taking this open challenge as a welcome cue, the present article addresses CSCW's scope: the rationale for its focus on ordinary work. After an initial discussion of the arguments put forward by Crabtree et al. and by others, the article focuses on an analysis of the concept of 'work', drawing on the methods and insights of 'ordinary language philosophy', and, flowing from this, a critique of the notion of 'work' in conversation analysis. After a critical appraisal of prevailing myths about the realities of work in the contemporary world, the article ends in an attempt to position CSCW in the context of technological development more broadly. The underlying premise of the article is that it is time to reconsider CSCW: to rethink what it is and why it might be important.
Supporting the Collaborative Appropriation of an Open Software Ecosystem BIBAKFull-Text 403-448
  Sebastian Draxler; Gunnar Stevens
Since the beginning of CSCW there was an intense interest for research on workplace design using tailorable applications and sharing customizations. However, in the meantime the forms of production, distribution, configuration and appropriation of software have changed fundamentally. In order to reflect these developments, we enlarge the topic of discussion beyond customizing single applications, but focusing on how people design their workplaces making use of software ecosystems. We contribute to understand the new phenomenon from within the users' local context. By empirically studying the Eclipse software ecosystem and its appropriation, we show the improved flexibility users achieve at designing their workplaces. Further the uncovered practices demonstrate, why design strategies like mass-customization are a bad guiding principle as they just focus on the individual user. In contrast we outline an alternative design methodology based on existing CSCW approaches, but also envision where the workplace design in the age of software ecosystems has to go beyond.
Keywords: appropriation; CSCW; end user development; software eco-systems; tailoring; workplace design; eclipse

JCSCW 2011-12 Volume 20 Issue 6

Technology in Protestant Ministry BIBAKFull-Text 449-472
  Rebecca E. Grinter; Susan P. Wyche; Gillian R. Hayes; Lonnie D. Harvel
As Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) have entered homes and more, so Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) research has expanded to examine new motivations for coordination and communications. Recently this has grown to include a focus on religion. But, yet, while the uses of ICTs by practitioners of a variety of faiths have been examined, far less is known about how officials within religious institutions adopt, use and reject ICTs. In this paper, we report findings from a study of American Protestant Christian ministers' use of ICTs. We present findings and discuss the use of systems in church management, worship, pastoral care, and outreach, and the challenges in integrating ICTs into religious practice. Despite these difficulties, we found that ministers, chose to experiment with ICTs because of their ability to sustain, reinforce and grow their church (laity and ministry collectively) community.
Keywords: religion; collaboration
Accounting and Co-Constructing: The Development of a Standard for Electronic Health Records BIBAKFull-Text 473-495
  Claus Bossen
Patient records are central, constitutive parts of health care and hospitals. Currently, substantial sums are being invested in making patient records electronic, in order to take advantage of IT's ability to quickly accumulate, compute, and propagate data to multiple sites, to enhance coordination of health care services and cooperation among staff, and make patient records immediately accessible to distributed actors. Investors also aim to increase health care services' accountability and integration, and improve quality and efficiency. This paper analyses a Danish national standard for electronic health records, on the basis of an application prototype test designed to that standard. The analysis shows that, inscribed in the standard is an ambition to increase the accountability of staff and health care services at the cost of increased work, loss of overview, and fragmentation of patient cases. Significantly, despite the standard having been conceived and developed in a process of co-construction involving clinicians, clinicians did not find it adequate for their work. This analysis argues this was the result of the model of work embedded in the standard coming from a stance external to practice. Subsequently, a flip-over effect occurred, in which the model of work became a model for work. Hence, this paper argues that co-construction processes should not only include users as representatives of a profession, but strive to produce experiences and knowledge intrinsic to practice.
Keywords: accountability; clinical work; co-construction; electronic health records; health care; hospitals; participatory design; representations; user involvement
Computer Interaction Analysis: Toward an Empirical Approach to Understanding User Practice and Eye Gaze in GUI-Based Interaction BIBAKFull-Text 497-528
  Robert J. Moore; Elizabeth F. Churchill
Today's personal computers enable complex forms of user interaction. Unlike older mainframe computers that required batch processing, personal computers enable real-time user control on a one-to-one basis. Such user interaction involves mixed initiative, logic, language and pointing gestures, features reminiscent of interaction with another human. Yet there are also major differences between computer interaction and human interaction, such as computers' inability to stray from scripts or to adapt to the idiosyncrasies of particular recipients or situations. Given these similarities and differences, can we study computer interaction using methods similar to those for studying human interaction? If so, are the findings from the analysis of human interaction also useful in understanding computer interaction? In this paper, we explore these questions and outline a novel methodological approach for examining human-computer interaction, which we call "computer interaction analysis." We build on earlier approaches to human interaction with a computer and adapt them to the latest technologies for computer screen capture and eye tracking. In doing so, we propose a new transcription notation scheme that is designed to represent the interweaving streams of input actions, display events and eye movements. Finally we demonstrate the approach with concrete examples involving the phenomena of placeholding, repair and referential practices.
Keywords: computer interaction analysis; ethnomethodology; conversation analysis; human computer interaction; eye tracking; web search
Investigating the Role of a Large, Shared Display in Multi-Display Environments BIBAKFull-Text 529-561
  James R. Wallace; Stacey D. Scott; Eugene Lai; Deon Jajalla
We conducted an empirical study to investigate the use of personal and shared displays during group work. The collaborative environments under study consisted of personal workspaces, in the form of laptops, and a shared virtual workspace displayed on a nearby wall. Our study compared the use of the large shared display under two different interface content conditions; a status display that provided an overview of the group's current task performance, and a replicated view of the shared workspace that allowed task work to occur on the shared display. The study results suggest that while participants used their personal displays primarily to perform the task, the shared display facilitated several key teamwork mechanisms. In particular, the provided status display best facilitated monitoring of group progress, whereas the replicated content display best facilitated conversational grounding. Regardless of the shared display content, having a shared, physical reference point also appeared to support synchronization of the group activity via body language and gaze.
Keywords: multi-display environments; evaluation; design; display configuration; input redirection; personalized views; content replication; job shop scheduling task