Map functions to facilitate situational awareness during emergency events
Peer reviewed, Journal article
MetadataShow full item record
Original versionOpach, T., Rød, J. K. & Munkvold, B. E. (2023). Map functions to facilitate situational awareness during emergency events. Cartography and Geographic Information Science, 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1080/15230406.2023.2264759
Emergency events such as floods and wildfires are handled by various responders and at various levels: strategic, tactical, and operational. To facilitate situational awareness, emergency responders require customized map-based decision support systems that are tailored to specific needs depending on the responders’ organizational affiliation, role, objectives, and occupationally specific knowledge. As a result, the systems are equipped with manifold map functions. However, the diversity of map-based emergency tools in use impedes gaining common user skills among their target audiences and thus, requires a systematic overview. Through a multistep research process, this study was to: investigate the requirements for support from map-based tools expressed by various emergency responders in Norway, identify desired map functions, and categorize those functions to facilitate an overview. Six stages constituted our workflow: meetings with Norwegian emergency responders, survey on selected map-based tools, interviews with designers and users of tools, a table-top exercise, theoretical considerations, and validation with stakeholders. This study contributes to the state of the art by systematizing and structuring knowledge about map functions that facilitate situational awareness. In turn, it helps developing and optimizing functionality of map-based tools depending on needs of specific emergency responders.