Imbrication between human and material agencies in decision making in the police work force: Affordances explained in practice

Matthijs Verhulst, Anne-Francoise Rutkowski

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Task complexity has been an important part of analyses of the Group
Support System literature and relates to both task performance’s process and
outcomes. The entanglement between the human agency (e.g., users) and the
material agency (e.g., technology) should not be underestimated when
considering decision-making enacted through technology usage. A relational
concept of technology, affordances and constraints facilitates the organizational understanding of the potential of a technology as well as its sometimes unintended use. In order to assess the interaction between human and material agencies, we draw from the “imbrication” metaphor on sociomateriality. In this article, we combine the perspective of affordances with the McGrath task typology/circumplex) to study the material and human agency in the context of decision making in police work. Our approach is illustrated with field data collected during decision-making of police officers in practice. The approach proves useful to determine the outcomes of technology on High Reliability Organizations. It outlines differences between intended technology use and technology affordance as it is enacted in practice.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 17th International Conference on Group Decision and Negotiation
Subtitle of host publicationHohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences, Research Area NegoTrans, 16-2017
EditorsMareike Schoop, Marc Kilgour
Place of PublicationStuttgart
PublisherSpringer
Pages415-422
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017
Event17th International Conference on Group Decision and Negotiation - University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany
Duration: 14 Aug 201718 Aug 2017
Conference number: 17

Conference

Conference17th International Conference on Group Decision and Negotiation
Abbreviated titleGDN 2017
CountryGermany
CityStuttgart
Period14/08/1718/08/17

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Keywords

  • group support systems
  • affordances
  • constraints
  • imbrication
  • collaborative technology
  • high reliability organizations

Cite this

Verhulst, M., & Rutkowski, A-F. (2017). Imbrication between human and material agencies in decision making in the police work force: Affordances explained in practice. In M. Schoop, & M. Kilgour (Eds.), Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Group Decision and Negotiation: Hohenheim Discussion Papers in Business, Economics and Social Sciences, Research Area NegoTrans, 16-2017 (pp. 415-422). Springer.