Disaster Information, Resilience, for Emergency and Crisis Technologies

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    The Past Two Decades in Disaster Information Management: Academic Contributors and Topical Evolution
    ( 2023-01-03) Scholl, Hans Jochen
    Academic Research in Disaster Information Management has been conducted over more than two decades worldwide. The scholarly community, numbering in the hundreds rather than thousands of contributors, has produced a body of knowledge that comprises over four thousand peer-reviewed academic articles. With this volume of research, Disaster Information Management has grown into a sizable domain of study and reached a critical mass of output, which justifies topical and directional analyses that in turn help identify potential gaps in scholarly attention. Furthermore, such analyses of the body of knowledge allow for determining major publication venues as well as identifying contributors including the underlying scholarly networks. With this paper a first comprehensive account of the evolution of topical directions inside the study domain is established. Also, leading contributors and influencers are named, and their networks and publication venues are identified. Over the past two decades the study domain of Disaster Information Management is found to be steadily growing in publication numbers as well as in research avenues.
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    Introduction to the Minitrack on Disaster Information, Resilience, for Emergency and Crisis Technologies
    ( 2023-01-03) Benaben, Frederick ; Dugdale, Julie ; Tapia, Andrea ; Negre, Elsa ; Sakurai, Mihoko
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    Digital Innovation of Healthcare Services in Times of Crisis and Beyond
    ( 2023-01-03) Hausvik, Geir Inge ; Askedal, Kirsti
    The COVID-19 pandemic has created a worldwide state of emergency, triggering extensive digital innovation within healthcare institutions to recover from the disrupted services caused by the pandemic. The purpose of this research is to explore the phenomena of digital innovation during these extraordinary conditions and to understand the impacts during the pandemic and beyond. To do so, we conducted a systematic literature review by analyzing 130 research articles across research disciplines that were published during the pandemic. We found that the innovation processes were highly iterative and focused on rapid diffusion to address the urgent need for stabilizing and recovering disrupted services. This short-term perspective may result in adverse impacts beyond the pandemic, such as increased inequity. Moreover, we found that some environmental factors were highly adaptive to the pandemic, whereas others were less so. We suggest that organizations should focus on the latter when building resilience to future pandemics.
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    Signals of Transition in Crisis Management: Insights from a Study of Social Media Use in Public Service Organizations
    ( 2023-01-03) Herrera, Lucia Castro ; Gjøsæter, Terje ; Majchrzak, Tim A. ; Thapa, Devinder
    In crisis informatics, little attention is placed on how transitions occur between periods of crisis and non-crisis. The analysis of transition behaviors in organizations could respond to both the cyclicality of risk and crisis management, and the need for continuity of services provided to the community. In studying transitions, we focus on social media use as a support system. Thus, with the objective to gain an insight into how sociotechnical systems navigate through periods of crisis and non-crisis, we leverage individual experiences that rely on social media as a source of information in public service organizations and developers of social media analytics support tools. The main contribution of this study is the explanation and conceptualization on how transitions happen by framing social media as a support system of information for crisis management. In addition, we highlight the return to a new steady-state, an overlooked area of organizational transitions and continuity.
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    Examining User Access Options for eGovernment Services During a Crisis from a Digital Inequality Perspective
    ( 2023-01-03) Zobel, Christopher ; Pamukcu, Duygu
    City governments incorporate ICTs into government services to improve citizen participation and access to those services. Too much dependence on technology, however, can lead to concerns about creating a digital divide between different groups of citizens. The potential for digital inequality is a critical issue that can be exacerbated by insufficient attention being paid to vulnerabilities across communities. Given that socio-economically vulnerable populations are the ones who need government services the most, especially during disaster events, it is critical to investigate the extent to which digital inequality is an issue for technology-based government services. With this in mind, this paper analyzes the use of different technology-enabled access options for a representative eGovernment service system, the New York City 311 service system, in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Two sets of socio-economically distinct locations in New York City are compared, using average income as a proxy for vulnerability, to draw conclusions about potential inequalities in such a system during a crisis.
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    Design and Instantiation of IS2SAVE: An Information System to Predict the Influx of Spontaneous Volunteers at Operating Sites
    ( 2023-01-03) Lindner, Sebastian ; Kuehnel, Stephan
    Disaster managers are in charge of encountering natural disasters, yet, more often supported by citizens, so-called spontaneous volunteers. Their help has repeatedly been reported to be valuable for reducing disaster scales, regarding an increase in natural disasters occurrences with devastating effects. However, their characteristic to emerge in large groups has led to an unpredictable influx at operating sites from the perspective of disaster management. Finally, this led to problems such as congestions and blocked emergency routes, overcrowded operating sites and hampering officials in doing their work. To address this unpredictability, we apply a design science research approach to design and develop an information system to predict the influx of spontaneous volunteers at operating sites. We examine three design requirements and ten design principles, that we instantiate in a prototype. We finally validate our design theory empirically with experts, who positively highlight its perceived usefulness, conciseness, extendibility, explanatory power.
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    Constraint-based Recommender System for Crisis Management Simulations
    ( 2023-01-03) Lê, Ngoc Luyen ; Zhong, Jinfeng ; Negre, Elsa ; Abel, Marie-Hélène
    In the context of the evacuation of populations, some citizens/volunteers may want and be able to participate in the evacuation of populations in difficulty by coming to lend a hand to emergency/evacuation vehicles with their own vehicles. One way of framing these impulses of solidarity would be to be able to list in real-time the citizens/volunteers available with their vehicles (land, sea, air, etc.), to be able to geolocate them according to the risk areas to be evacuated, and adding them to the evacuation/rescue vehicles. Because it is difficult to propose an effective real-time operational system on the field in a real crisis situation, in this work, we propose to add a module for recommending driver/vehicle pairs (with their specificities) to a system of crisis management simulation. To do that, we chose to model and develop an ontology-supported constraint-based recommender system for crisis management simulations.
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    A Framework for Virtual Training in Crisis Context and a Focus on the Animation Component: The Gamemaster Workshop
    ( 2023-01-03) Evain, Alexis ; Fertier, Audrey ; Halse, Shane ; Kropczynski, Jess ; Benaben, Frederick ; Panzoli, David ; Batard, Robin
    Critical infrastructures, historical places, and sensitive buildings are vulnerable to crises, from natural to man-made disasters. Public institutions and practitioners have to train, before the occurrence of a major event, to be prepared to respond to the crisis. These sites are difficult to vacate just to perform exercises. To propose training adapted to the needs the trainer have to create an exercise dedicated to the aimed skills. Stakeholders responding to high-risk situations are asking for new ways to train and compensate for the weaknesses of existing training approaches. The research work presented in this paper concerns the design of immersive environments that can be used to create, implement and simulate crisis scenarios to improve collaborative training.
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    Autonomous Search and Rescue with Modeling and Simulation and Metrics
    ( 2023-01-03) Bihl, Trevor ; Cox, Chadwick ; Adams, Yuki ; Pennington, James
    Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) provide rapid exploration capabilities in search and rescue missions while accepting more risks than human operations. One limitation in that current UAVs are heavily manpower intensive and such manpower demands limit abilities to expand UAV use. In operation, manpower demands in UAVs range from determining tasks, selecting waypoints, manually controlling platforms and sensors, and tasks in between. Often, even a high level of autonomy is possible with human generated objectives and then autonomous resource allocation, routing, and planning. However, manually generating tasks and scenarios is still manpower intensive. To reduce manpower demands and move towards more autonomous operations, the authors develop an adaptive planning system that takes high level goals from a human operator and translates them into situationally relevant tasking. For expository simulation, the authors further describe constructing a scenario around the 2018 Hawaii Puna lava natural disaster.
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    The Technology Crisis in US-based Emergency Management: Toward a Well-Connected Future
    ( 2023-01-03) Lalone, Nicolas ; Toups Dugas, Phoebe ; Semaan, Bryan
    For many years, CI has tried to show the value of computational techniques for response to hazard events but has yet to see success outside of post-hoc analyses. Meanwhile, emergency management (EM) has been struggling to cope with the impact of computation. This duality wherein we know technology can be useful yet also complicates EM (and has not yet been fully integrated into EM) is what we dub the technology crisis in EM. To begin to address this crisis and revitalize CI, we argue that it is necessary to develop an inventory of what technologies EM is competent with and to design training that can extend that competency. This research reports a survey of EM Practitioners in the United States. We offer one of the first inventories of EM technologies and technological skills and identify how current EM technological integration issues are a crisis.