Title: An interactive computer-based simulation environment for supporting and developing complex decision-making skills

Authors: Roger Hartley

Addresses: University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK

Abstract: Many managerial contexts in the public services and industry utilise large-scale information systems and require effective decision-making at strategic and tactical levels. Developing such skills presents problems because of the complexities of the decision-making and because conventional training techniques are usually difficult to manage and are limited in their scale and objectives. Computer-based simulations should have the potential to overcome some of these difficulties through interactive multimedia facilities, their range of feedback displays and networking and record-keeping, which enable collaborative engagement and reflective debriefing. Under an activity theory framework, this paper discusses the design and formative evaluation of an interactive simulation environment (CACTUS) for supporting and developing decision-making in the management of large-scale incidents relating to public order. The project was a collaboration with the London Metropolitan Police and a principal focus was the way the system facilities and its interface evolved to accommodate and support the varying roles of trainers/facilitators and trainees so that they and CACTUS, formed an interactive collaborative system.

Keywords: complex decision making; simulation environments; interface design.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCEELL.2003.003279

International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 2003 Vol.13 No.3/4, pp.212 - 231

Published online: 07 Aug 2003 *

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