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Investigating the Use and Effectiveness of Virtual Collaboration Desks for Collaborative Military Planning

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3 Author(s)
Louvieris, P. ; Univ. of Surrey, Guildford ; Collins, C. ; Mashanovich, N.

This paper focuses on the use of a Virtual Collaborative Working and Visualisation Environment (VCWVE), i.e. using virtual collaborative desks (VCDs), for the development of shared situational awareness using a common operational picture to support collaborative military planning in joint command and control situations. Joint usability, critical task and situational awareness assessment methods were employed to determine the effectiveness of this VCWVE in supporting commanders' joint decision making. With reference to the British Army's seven questions (7Qs) estimate process and intelligence preparation of the battlefield along with a small military judgment panel (MJP) used for the simulation experiment, the research focused on how effectively networked VCDs highlighted commander's critical information requirements and their evolving requests for information during the planning process. The research also highlighted how collaborative technologies can not only help to improve joint decision making in a distributed HQ environment but also how an effective plan and its products can be delivered such as: the decision support overlay, the decision support matrix and the synchronisation matrix. As a result of this research a joint usability framework has been developed. This research has military significance in terms of enabling synchronised joint decision making in resilient agile distributed HQ groups and thereby reducing security risk of commander and staff.

Published in:

System Sciences, 2009. HICSS '09. 42nd Hawaii International Conference on

Date of Conference:

5-8 Jan. 2009