A resources model for distributed sensemaking

Attfield, Simon and Fields, Bob and Baber, Chris (2018) A resources model for distributed sensemaking. Cognition, Technology and Work, 20 (4). pp. 651-664. ISSN 1435-5566

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Abstract

In the field of Naturalistic Decision Making, the Data-Frame Model (DFM) has proven to be a popular and useful way of thinking about sensemaking. DFM provides a parsimonious account of how ‘sensemakers’ interact with the data in their environment in order to make sense of what is happening. In this paper, however, we argue that it is useful to elaborate DFM in several ways. We begin by arguing for the idea of sensemaking as a quest for coherence, an idea that we see as entirely consistent with the DFM. We then present some examples of sensemaking studies and use these to motivate a Distributed Resources Model of Sensemaking. This model uses the notion of resources for action, as resources that can be flexibly drawn upon in both choosing courses of action and accounting for the actions of oneself and of others (as opposed to prescriptions or mechanisms that determine behaviour in any strict way). It describes resources involved in sensemaking in terms of three domains: Knowledge and Beliefs, Values and Goals, and Action. Knowledge and beliefs are concerned with how things are; Values and Goals are concerned with how things are desired to be; and Action provides the means for redressing the gap. Central to the model is the idea that these resources can be distributed across a cognitive work system across actors and representational media. Hence, it aims to provide a framework for analysing sensemaking as Distributed Cognition.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Computer Science
Item ID: 24917
Notes on copyright: This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Cognition, Technology and Work. The final authenticated version is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10111-018-0529-4
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Depositing User: Bob Fields
Date Deposited: 14 Sep 2018 13:31
Last Modified: 22 Nov 2018 17:39
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/24917

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