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Markus Klann <[log in to unmask]>
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Markus Klann <[log in to unmask]>
Sun, 1 Feb 2009 14:50:48 +0100
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                        International Workshop on

          Mobile Information Technology for Emergency Response

           held in conjunction with the ISCRAM 2009 Conference
                     May 10th, 2009, Göteborg, Sweden


Focus: Mobile ICT meeting the difficult conditions of emergency situations
--> Design approaches and technological aspects
--> Studying and understanding usage by professionals and the general public

Workshop Web Page:

ISCRAM Web Page:

Call for Position Papers (1-4 pages)

Deadline: March 19th
Notification: April 6th
Workshop Registration: 

Submit to: [log in to unmask]

4 page abstracts can enter a fast-track submission with credited reviews to
Mobile Response 2009 (see


Many mobile ICT systems for emergency response look nice on slides or when
demonstrated at fairs. But looking at them many people including prospective

users get an uneasy feeling about actually using them during an emergency. 
Firefighters may wonder whether they really want to trust their lives to
new device and aid workers may wonder whether they really want to take some 
new system half way around the world to some natural disaster location out
electricity and spare parts but abundant with rain and people in need of 
immediate support.

We believe that these concerns are mostly well justified. Addressing them 
requires covering two distinct aspects. First, the technologies and designs 
must match the actual requirements of the fields. Given the diverse and 
extreme nature of many emergency response operations this is already 
surprisingly difficult to achieve. Second, even systems that match the 
requirements of the field still have to earn the acceptance of their users
use them efficiently, effectively and with informed confidence.
Understandably, emergency workers are particularly reluctant about adopting 
new systems because they have to rely on them for the effectiveness of their

support efforts or even their own lives.

Essentially, this challenge is the same whenever designing tools to support 
some non-trivial work process. The particularity of supporting emergency 
response with mobile ICT is that the requirements and constraints of the 
domain are especially hard to study and understand and that in terms of both

the products and the process of design very specific solutions are required.

--- WORKSHOP ---

What we would like to offer with this workshop is an opportunity for
response practitioners as well as researchers and developers of mobile ICT
exchange their experiences with the challenges of creating mobile ICT for 
emergencies outlined above.

As an inspiration and focus for the discussion here are four dimensions of 
these challenges with related questions for which we invite participants to 
submit position papers on case studies, approaches, methods and techniques, 
recommendations and questions, technological concepts, system design, 
and core technology components:

Rough and dirty
- How to create and deal with realistic usage conditions 
  when testing ICT prototypes for emergency situations?
- How to design and build robust systems?

Tough and stressful: 
- How to create, assess and handle realistic psychological conditions 
  when studying activities and behavior in simulated emergency situations 
  such as trials or exercises?
- How to design services and interfaces for users in high stress situations?

Complex and confusing: 
- How to observe and handle activities and behavior in large-scale emergency

  situations with many actors in a large area?
- How to design systems that reduce complexity and avoid information

Trained and cautious: 
- How to make emergency professionals who rely on their current familiar
  effectively use and assess innovative technologies during field trials?
- How to design innovative systems that deserve and effectively receive
trust and 
  that are highly usable by both domain experts and relatively novice users?

During the workshop, each participant will have time to give a presentation
of 10-15 minutes. In order to fuel the exchange of experiences and
discussion we ask all presenters to focus on contributing to one or more of
the questions above by either refining them, formulating a hyopthesis, or
suggesting an answer and ideally by describing in concrete terms an
experience they had or studied of using or designing mobile ICT for


Markus Klann, Fraunhofer FIT, Germany
Jobst Löffler, Fraunhofer IAIS, Germany


- Alexander Artikis, NCSR "Demokritos", Greece
- Chris Baber, University of Birmingham, UK
- Luca Chittaro, University of Udine, Italy
- Chris Johnson, University of Glasgow, UK
- Jonas Landgren, Viktoria Institute, Sweden
- Martha Larson, TU Delft, The Netherlands
- Andreas Meissner, Fraunhofer IITB, Germany
- Lucas Noldus, Noldus Information Technology, The Netherlands
- Jens Pottebaum, University of Paderborn, Germany
- Gurminder Singh, Naval Postgraduate School, USA

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