Information systems implications for information flow between layers in emergency management coordination

Classify & Cross-ref
Fire Management
Risk Management
TitleInformation systems implications for information flow between layers in emergency management coordination
Publication TypeReport
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsOwen, C
Date Published2012
AbstractThis report addresses the first of three information systems deliverables contained within the research project Organising for Effective Incident Management. The focus here is on better understanding the work performed at regional and state levels of incident so that the implications for information systems supporting that work can be addressed. The report commences with a framework for understanding work activity in complex socio-technical domains and then conducts an analysis of the kinds of decisions made and challenges faced at state and regional levels. It then outlines a number of implications that information systems would need to address in order to support the work that people undertake in those state and regional roles. Two organisational surveys were used as the main sources of data collection. In the first organisational survey 206 experienced personnel across a range of jurisdictions and states in Australia and New Zealand provided an outline of their activities and challenges in their main roles at a recent incident. This yielded comments from participants working at state/national levels (n=30); regional levels (n=49) and local levels (n=58) of incident management. For the purposes of this report the 79 participants working at regional and state/national levels made 120 comments and these have been included in the data analysis. A second organisational survey, undertaken by the Office for the Fire Services Commissioner in Victoria, was also used because it provides a more detailed case study of the information needs of the various stakeholders involved at state and regional levels in one multi-jurisdictional location. The data reported here is a recoding and re-analysis of components of that survey. Victorian participants were asked to nominate the role they most commonly perform in an incident and to list the three most important decisions/actions they make in that role. Only personnel who were engaged in work at a state or regional level were included in this analysis (state n=80; regional n=23) and they yielded 160 comments. The comments from the two organisational surveys were analysed and grouped into five themes, each with sub-themes.