T. K.O. Gjernes, NORDLAND RESEARCH INSTITUT, Bodø, Norway
We plan a study of how risk assessments and risks are handled in a rescue coordination center. Data will be collected through fieldwork; in-situ observations, formal interviewing and informal conversations. We are particularly interested in two aspects of the employees risk assessments and risk handling. Firstly the interaction that takes place between those who are involved in risk assessments or rescue operations and the information they generate as relevant and necessary for understanding and handling the situations at stake. Secondly, how those who take part in these activities relate to and use the information they obtain about the situation. This is information of multiple kinds from multiple sources. It may be information from electronic maps, from weather forecast, directly from vessels in trouble or other direct observations at sites of emergencies or risk situations. It may also be information from other rescue coordination centers or other agencies involved in this kind of activities. The first and the second aspect are both in use to establish an understanding of the situation of those in danger and to decide what to do in situations of crisis or immediate risk. Our intention is to study such activities at a rescue coordination center as collaborative and socially distributed problem solving activities with several participants, some of them are human actors and some of them forms of representations and technological equipment.