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Current Problems, Future Needs: Voices of First Responders about Communication Technology

Published

Author(s)

Kerrianne Buchanan, Shanee Dawkins, Yee-Yin Choong, Mary Theofanos, Kristen Greene, Susanne M. Furman, Sandra S. Prettyman

Abstract

With advances in network technologies, there has been increasing interest in developing new communication technology for first responders that utilizes wireless broadband networks. In order to develop new communication technology, user requirements are needed to ensure new technology is usable; however, capturing user requirements for first responders has been challenging due to the diversity of its users' contexts and needs. This paper aims to provide guidance and insight into developing user requirements for communication technology developed for first responders by exploring first responders' communication technology problems and needs. Qualitative interviews with 193 first responders across four disciplines (comm center & 9-1-1 services; emergency medical services; fire service; law enforcement) revealed that they often encountered problems with their communication technology's reliability, usability, and interoperability. Their primary need for their communication technology was for solutions to their current problems, rather than development of new technology. Many were also interested in communication technology that can provide them with real-time information. This study underscores that communication technology for first responders should be designed and developed for and with first responders.
Proceedings Title
HCII 2021: Human-Computer Interaction. Design and User Experience Case Studies
Conference Dates
July 24-29, 2021
Conference Location
Washington, DC

Keywords

Cognition, First Responders, Psychology, Public Safety, Social Sciences, Usability, User Requirements, UX

Citation

Buchanan, K. , Dawkins, S. , Choong, Y. , Theofanos, M. , Greene, K. , , S. and Prettyman, S. (2021), Current Problems, Future Needs: Voices of First Responders about Communication Technology, HCII 2021: Human-Computer Interaction. Design and User Experience Case Studies , Washington, DC, [online], https://tsapps.nist.gov/publication/get_pdf.cfm?pub_id=931921 (Accessed September 28, 2021)
Created July 27, 2021