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Managing the constraints of boundary spanning in emergency management


Curnin, S and Owen, C and Trist, C, Managing the constraints of boundary spanning in emergency management, Cognition, Technology and Work, 16, (4) pp. 549-563. ISSN 1435-5566 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 Springer-Verlag London

DOI: doi:10.1007/s10111-014-0285-z


Stakeholders tasked with boundary spanning in emergency management are fundamental in facilitating multi-agency coordination. However, there is a scarcity of research investigating the characteristics of emergency management boundary spanners and how they achieve this function in the complex environment of emergency operation centres. An exploratory case study approach was adopted and applied in a strategic-level emergency operations centre. The study used three very different but interrelated qualitative research techniques based upon the Core-Task Analysis framework to categorize the work of stakeholders fulfilling a boundary spanning role in this setting. The data identified that stakeholders performing boundary spanning activities in a strategic-level emergency operations centre face a number of constraints. These can include unfamiliarity with the work domain, its personnel, and structure which can lead to temporal, cultural and information challenges. In order to manage these constraints, boundary spanners working in a strategic-level emergency operations centre need to adopt certain characteristics in order to accomplish their activities. A significant outcome from the data was the necessity to engage in these important undertakings in the pre-response phase in an effort to facilitate successful multi-agency coordination in an actual emergency event

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Boundary spanning  Emergency operations centre  Multi-agency coordination  Liaison officer  Emergency management  Disaster management
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Policy and administration
Research Field:Policy and administration not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Information and Communication Services
Objective Group:Other information and communication services
Objective Field:Other information and communication services not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Curnin, S (Associate Professor Steven Curnin)
UTAS Author:Owen, C (Dr Christine Owen)
ID Code:95306
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:7
Deposited By:Education
Deposited On:2014-09-30
Last Modified:2017-04-26

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