JCSCW Vol. 25 (2016)

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  • Journal Article
    Implications of We-Awareness to the Design of Distributed Groupware Tools
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, 2016) Greenberg, Saul; Gutwin, Carl
    We-awareness is the socially recursive inferences that let collaborators know that all are mutually aware of each other’s awareness. While we-awareness is easy afforded in face to face collocated collaboration, it is much more difficult to design distributed groupware tools to provide equivalent capabilities: there can be no awareness unless it is programmed in via system features. We identify a series of questions that must be considered if we-awareness is to be supported. What types of awareness information is crucial and should thus be added to the ‘blank slate’ of a screen sharing system? How can that awareness information be captured through technology, and what information will be lost during this capture process? How should that information be translated, transformed and encoded into a digital form, and—as part of that—what information will be altered as part of that translation process? How will that information be transmitted, and what are the network effects in terms of that information being received in a timely manner? How will that information be represented to other participants in order to enable the rich and subtle interactions that occur in the face-to-face setting? We illustrate the nuances of these questions and why they are difficult to answer by revisiting several prior technical solutions to we-awareness.
  • Journal Article
    The Trouble with Common Ground
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, 42644) Koschmann, Timothy
    Tenenberg, Roth and Socha ( 2016 ) documents interaction within a paired programming task. The analysis rests on a conceptualization the authors term “We-awareness.” “We-awareness”, in turn, builds on Tomasello’s notion of “shared intentionality” and through it, upon Clark’s formulation of Common Ground (CG). In this commentary I review the features of CG. I attempt to show that neither Tomasello’s ( 2014 ) notion of “shared intentionality” nor Clark’s ( 1996 ) model of CG-shared develop an adequate treatment of the sequential emergence of subjective meaning. This is a critical problem for CG and other conceptualizations that build upon it (e.g., “shared intentionality”, “We-awareness”). And it calls into question their usefulness for building an analytic apparatus for studying mutual awareness at the worksite. I suggest that Schütz’s ( 1953 ) model of “motive coordination” might serve as a better starting place.
  • Journal Article
    Discourse/s in/of CSCW
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, 2016) Roth, Wolff-Michael; Tenenberg, Josh; Socha, David
  • Journal Article
    Telecare Call Centre Work and Ageing in Place
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, No. 1, 2016) Procter, Rob; Wherton, Joe; Greenhalgh, Trish; Sugarhood, Paul; Rouncefield, Mark; Hinder, Sue
    We report findings from a study of call centre staff working to deliver a telecare service designed to enable older people to ‘age in place’. We show the steps they routinely take to produce a care system on behalf of their clients and their families that is both workable within the constraints of available resources and fit-for-purpose. In doing so, we have seen how call centre staff share with one another their experiences and solutions to problems, carry out liaison work with networks of lay carers, and generally act as the ‘glue’ providing the all-important link between otherwise fragmented services. We conclude with some thoughts on the significant technical and organizational challenges if the ‘ageing in place’ vision is to be realized in a practical, secure, dependable and cost-effective way.
  • Journal Article
    Cooperative Epistemic Work in Medical Practice: An Analysis of Physicians’ Clinical Notes
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, No. 6, 2016) Bansler, Jørgen P.; Havn, Erling C.; Schmidt, Kjeld; Mønsted, Troels; Petersen, Helen Høgh; Svendsen, Jesper Hastrup
    We examine an important part of the medical record that has not been studied extensively: physicians’ clinical notes. These notes constitute an explanatory medical narrative that documents the patient’s illness trajectory by combining each physician’s notes into a common text. Although several prior CSCW studies have addressed the role of the medical record in patient care, they have not dealt specifically with the role, structure, and content of these notes. In this article, we present a detailed analysis of a set of physicians’ clinical notes recording the acute hospitalization and subsequent treatment of a patient with chronic heart disease. We show that clinical notes are highly structured and conventionalized texts that promote conciseness while at the same time allowing physicians to express themselves in a precise and nuanced way. Based on this analysis, we argue that physicians’ clinical notes form the core of the medical record. They serve both as a ‘tool for thinking’ for the individual physician, enabling him or her to make sense of the patient’s past history and current condition, and as a coordinative artifact used by physicians, nurses, and other health care professionals. We conclude by discussing the implications of this research for the design of Electronic Medical Record (EMR) systems.
  • Journal Article
    Treacherous Ground: On Some Conceptual Pitfalls in CSCW
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, 2016) Schmidt, Kjeld
  • Journal Article
    Unpacking the Notion of Participation in Participatory Design
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, No. 6, 42705) Bratteteig, Tone; Wagner, Ina
    The paper explores what exactly it is that users participate in when being involved in participatory design (PD), relating this discussion to the CSCW perspective on collaborative design work. We argue that a focus on decision-making in design is necessary for understanding participation in design. Referring to Schön we see design as involving creating choices, selecting among them, concretizing choices and evaluating the choices. We discuss how these kinds of activities have played out in four PD projects that we have participated in. Furthermore, we show that the decisions are interlinked, and discuss the notion of decision linkages. We emphasize the design result as the most important part of PD. Finally, participation is discussed as the sharing of power, asking what the perspective of power and decision-making adds to the understanding of design practices.
  • Journal Article
    From I-Awareness to We-Awareness in CSCW
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, 2016) Tenenberg, Josh; Roth, Wolff-Michael; Socha, David
    Awareness is one of the central concepts in Computer Supported Cooperative Work, though it has often been used in several different senses. Recently, researchers have begun to provide a clearer conceptualization of awareness that provides concrete guidance for the structuring of empirical studies of awareness and the development of tools to support awareness. Such conceptions, however, do not take into account newer understandings of shared intentionality among cooperating actors that recently have been defined by philosophers and empirically investigated by psychologists and psycho-linguists. These newer conceptions highlight the common ground and socially recursive inference that underwrites cooperative behavior. And it is this inference that is often seamlessly carried out in collocated work, so easy to take for granted and hence overlook, that will require computer support if such work is to be partially automated or carried out at a distance. Ignoring the inferences required in achieving common ground may thus focus a researcher or designer on surface forms of “heeding” that miss the underlying processes of intention shared in and through activity that are critical for cooperation to succeed. Shared intentionality thus provides a basis for reconceptualizing awareness in CSCW research, building on and augmenting existing notions. In this paper, we provide a philosophically grounded conception of awareness based on shared intentionality, demonstrate how it accounts for behavior in an empirical study of two individuals in collocated, tightly-coupled work, and provide implications of this conception for the design of computational systems to support tightly-coupled collaborative work.
  • Journal Article
    Turning to Peers: Integrating Understanding of the Self, the Condition, and Others’ Experiences in Making Sense of Complex Chronic Conditions
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, No. 6, 2016) O’Kane, Aisling Ann; Park, Sun Young; Mentis, Helena; Blandford, Ann; Chen, Yunan
    People are increasingly involved in the self-management of their own health, including chronic conditions. With technology advances, the choice of self-management practices, tools, and technologies has never been greater. The studies reported here investigated the information seeking practices of two different chronic health populations in their quest to manage their health conditions. Migraine and diabetes patients and clinicians in the UK and the US were interviewed about their information needs and practices, and representative online communities were explored to inform a qualitative study. We found that people with either chronic condition require personally relevant information and use a broad and varied set of practices and tools to make sense of their specific symptoms, triggers, and treatments. Participants sought out different types of information from varied sources about themselves, their medical condition, and their peers’ experiences of the same chronic condition. People with diabetes and migraine expended great effort to validate their personal experiences of their condition and determine whether these experiences were ‘normal’. Based on these findings, we discuss the need for future personal health technologies that support people in engaging in meaningful and personalised data collection, information seeking, and information sharing with peers in flexible ways that enable them to better understand their own condition.
  • Journal Article
    From Intersubjectivity to Group Cognition
    (Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW): Vol. 25, 42644) Stahl, Gerry
    The question of how it is possible for people to understand each other has been a controversial theme throughout the recent history of philosophy. It is a foundational issue for the social sciences, in which researchers try to understand the behaviors and statements of other people. It is of particular relevance to CSCW and CSCL, where participants have to understand, work with and learn with each other. Philosophers have posed the issue of how an individual can understand another and how a small group or community can have a joint understanding, shared intentionality or we-awareness. Studies of CSCW not only adopt insights from the philosophy of intersubjectivity to ground their methodology, they also contribute to the analysis of how intersubjectivity is established in concrete settings, including in virtual environments. Similarly, CSCL research can investigate how groups of people learn to construct intersubjective understandings in both traditional and technologically enhanced interactions. While classical phenomenology of intersubjectivity started from the cognitions of a solitary mind, the notion of intersubjectivity has subsequently shifted to a more social view. Recent studies of intersubjectivity suggest a structure of group cognition, which can provide a foundation for collaboration in work and learning that incorporates but transcends individual cognition.