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  • 1.
    Andreasson, Rebecca
    et al.
    Uppsala University.
    Jansson, Anders A.
    Uppsala University.
    Lindblom, Jessica
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    The coordination between train traffic controllers and train drivers: a distributed cognition perspective on railway2019In: Cognition, Technology & Work, ISSN 1435-5558, E-ISSN 1435-5566, Vol. 21, no 3, p. 417-443Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Although there has long been a call for a holistic systems perspective to better understand real work in the complex domain of railway traffic, prior research has not strongly emphasised the socio-technical perspective. In operational railway traffic, the successful planning and execution of the traffic are the product of the socio-technical system comprised by both train drivers and traffic controllers. This paper presents a study inspired by cognitive ethnography with the aim to characterise the coordinating activities that are conducted by train traffic controllers and train drivers in the work practices of the socio-technical system of Swedish railway. The theoretical framework of distributed cognition (DCog) is used as a conceptual and analytical tool to make sense of the complex railway domain and the best practices as they are developed and performed “in the wild”. The analysis reveals a pattern of collaboration and coordination of actions among the workers and we introduce the concept of enacted actionable practices as a key concern for understanding how a successfully executed railway traffic emerges as a property of the socio-technical system. The implications for future railway research are briefly discussed.

  • 2.
    Andreasson, Rebecca
    et al.
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    Lindblom, Jessica
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    Thorvald, Peter
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    Interruptions in the wild: portraying the handling of interruptions in manufacturing from a distributed cognition lens2017In: Cognition, Technology & Work, ISSN 1435-5558, E-ISSN 1435-5566, Vol. 19, no 1, p. 85-108Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents a study examining interruptionsin the wild by portraying the handling of interruptionsin manufacturing from a distributed cognitionlens. By studying how interruptions occur and are handledin the daily activities of a work team at a large foundry forcasting heavy diesel engines, we highlight situations whenthe propagation, transformation, and representation ofinformation are not supported by prescribed work processesand propose recommendations for how this can beamended. The study was conducted by several visits to theaforementioned factory with cognitive ethnography as thebasis for the data collection. The focus was on identifyinginterruptions and analysing these through a distributedcognition framework as an initial step towards studyinginterruptions in a manufacturing environment. The keyfindings include the identification of three, previouslyundefined, types of interruptions and the conclusion thatinterruptions do indeed affect the distributed workload ofthe socio-technical system and thus the overall productionperformance at the casting line.

  • 3.
    Sellberg, Charlott
    et al.
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    Lindblom, Jessica
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    Comparing methods for workplace studies: a theoretical and empirical analysis2014In: Cognition, Technology & Work, ISSN 1435-5558, E-ISSN 1435-5566, Vol. 16, no 4, p. 467-486Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A comparative theoretical and empirical analysis of three methods for workplace studies is being conducted in this article. The aim of the study was to explore what level of theoretical depth and methodological structure is appropriate when conducting methods for workplace studies to inform design of complex socio-technical systems. As workplace studies in human–computer interaction (HCI) are a research field that has expanded in an extensive way in the past years, currently there are a wide range of theoretical approaches and methods to select from. The variety of approaches and methods makes it problematic to do relevant methodological choices both in research and system design. While there have been several studies that assess the different approaches to workplace studies, there seem to be a lack of studies that explore the theoretical and methodological differences between more structured methods within the research field. This article serves as a starting point to explore the many methods for workplace studies in HCI and contributes to the field with increased knowledge regarding the theoretical and methodological differences in workplace studies. When using the two criteria descriptive power and application power to assess Contextual Design, Determining Information Flow Breakdown, and Capturing Semi-Automated Decision-Making, lessons are learned about in which ways the methods are acceptable and useful when the purpose is to inform system design.

  • 4.
    Sellberg, Charlott
    et al.
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    Susi, Tarja
    University of Skövde, School of Informatics. University of Skövde, The Informatics Research Centre.
    Technostress in the office: a distributed cognition perspective on human-technology interaction2014In: Cognition, Technology & Work, ISSN 1435-5558, E-ISSN 1435-5566, Vol. 16, no 2, p. 187-201Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Technology is a mobile and integral part of many work places, and computers and other information and communication technology have made many users' work life easier, but technology can also contribute to problems in the cognitive work environment and, over time, create technostress. Much previous research on technostress has focused on the use of digital technology and its effects, measured by questionnaires, but in order to further examine how technostress arises in the modern workplace, a wider perspective on interactions between people and technology is needed. This paper applies a distributed cognition perspective to human-technology interaction, investigated through an observational field study. Distributed cognition focuses on the organisation of cognitive systems, and technostress in this perspective becomes an emergent phenomenon within a complex and dynamic socio-technical system. A well-established questionnaire was also used (for a limited sample), to gain a frame of reference for the results from the qualitative part of the study. The implications are that common questionnaire-based approaches very well can and should be complemented with a broader perspective to study causes of technostress. Based on the present study, a redefinition of technostress is also proposed. © 2013 Springer-Verlag London.

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