Reconfiguring Possibilities in Crisis Situations: an Agential Realist Approach to Participatory Design

Lisa A. Wood and Monika Büscher, Lancaster University


In this position paper we reflect on our use of Actor Network Theory (ANT) for participatory design of Emergency Management Information Systems (EMIS, Van De Walle, Turoff, & Hiltz, 2009) in the field of crisis response. Our approach is motivated by three key characteristics of innovation in this domain: (1) Augmentation: Citizens and professional emergency responders augment their perceptual and communicative capabilities with technologies; (2) Appropriation: People’s use of technologies in response to crises constitutes socio-technical innovation ‘in the wild’; (3) Adhocracies: Dynamic configurations of actors within and around statutory emergency services. ...



Proceedings of the Participatory Design Conference,
Roskilde, Denmark, 12-16 August 2012.


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