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Adaptive Information Architectures for Interagency Crisis Management

5th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management ISCRAM2008
SPECIAL SESSION on Adaptive Information Architectures for Interagency Crisis Management


This special session for ISCRAM 2008 aims to address problems surrounding the emerging area of adaptive information architectures, specifically in the very demanding context of crisis management. In this context adaptivity is a desired system property necessary when operating under highly complex, dynamic and unpredictable conditions. With Information architecture we refer to description or prescription of the relationships between the organizational and technology components of a system. Accordingly, information architectures are about actors, processes, information flows, data sources, re-formation, information technology and their mutual relationships. Improving the adaptivity of information architectures is necessary in order to ensure a high information quality (e.g. accessibility, timeliness, relevance) under rapidly changing and complex circumstances.

Research Area

The focus of the special session is on interagency information architectures and how we can improve their ability to adapt to dynamic circumstances. Crises are complex and dynamic events, meaning that there are many system components and interactions, that keep changing over time. During crisis response, multiple aspect of the response systems continuously change, including the information needs, processes and data sources. As current information architectures are focused on intra agency response and routine processes, they are unable to adequately adapt to changing environments. As a result, relief workers, both decision makers and first responders, are left with low information quality, including access to up to date and relevant information.

In order to ensure the information quality under complex and dynamic conditions, some form of adaptivity is necessary. Here adaptivity is a multidimensional concept, suggesting some forms of flexibility, scalability, and intelligence embedded throughout the response system. Because information architectures are about actors, processes, information flows, data sources, information technology and their mutual relationships, this research area spans multiple disciplines, including organization science and information systems research.


Some non-exhaustive examples of topics that could contribute to this session are:

ï Adaptivity: what does it mean, how can it be measured and improved, which tradeoffs need to be made?
ï Information quality dimensions (incl. timeliness, relevancy, added value) during response, which mechanisms can be used to ensure these dimensions
ï Interagency information sharing: organizational and technical issues hampering information sharing?
ï Network Centric operations: what are the information architecture challenges?
ï Brokers and intermediaries for interagency response, what do they contribute, which problems do they solve and which organizational issues need to be addressed?

Click here to download the Special Session Call in PDF format

Institutional Members



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