National Research Council of Canada. NRC Institute for Information Technology
Communication Association Annual Conference 2006, June 1-3, 2006, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
information environments; information needs; access; constraints; user behaviour; design; requirements analysis; systems analysis; use cases
A research methodology called Information Environment Mapping (IEM) was developed for use in the Community Intermediaries Research Project (CIRP). The CIRP was a study of the role of information and communication technologies (ICT) in community organizations that provide social services in the form of intermediation between community members and governmental and private sector organizations. One aspect of the CIRP was to understand the use of ICT in problem solving performed by community intermediary staff. Pilot studies suggested that people often find creative solutions to everyday problems that may not be obvious to those outside of their organizations or lines of work. The IEM methodology was developed in order to create a problem-solving environment for use in the CIRP in which respondents were encouraged to reveal unique perspectives on their information needs and any creative responses they employ to deal with challenges they face in getting at and using information. This methodology was adapted from a human-computer interface evaluation technique called cognitive walkthroughs. This paper provides and overview of the IEM methodology.
Communication Association Annual Conference 2006 [Proceedings].