Analyzing work-as-imagined and work-as-done of incident management teams using interaction episode analysis

Changwon Son, Farzan Sasangohar, S. Camille Peres, Jukrin Moon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Resilience is an important attribute of incident management teams (IMTs) for managing disasters. Previous research on resilience of IMTs has focused on comparing work-as-imagined (WAI) and work-as-done (WAD) but predominantly used narrative analyses which limited comparisons between IMTs. This paper presents a novel Interaction Episode Analysis (IEA) method to identify the IMT’s WAI and WAD episodes by analyzing dynamic interactions that occur between different roles that carry out information management tasks. Observations and audio-­visual recordings of two high-fidelity IMT exercises were conducted to capture WAD episodes, and semi-structured interviews with experts elicited corresponding WAI episodes. Quantitative analyses using five interaction-based measures were conducted to detect differences of the WAD episodes between two IMTs. Next, qualitative analyses were focused on identifying reasons why such differences have occurred by comparing the gaps between WAI and WAD episodes. Some of the reasons for WAI-WAD gaps included the non-occurrence of critical interactions that were expected and occurrence of unexpected interactions between IMT members. This paper also identifies cases of preparatory, proactive, and reactive performance adjustment that characterizes IMT resilience. The IEA method shows promise for investigating how and why the gaps between WAI and WAD in IMTs occur. With the identification of these gaps, future research can be conducted to reconcile the gaps between WAI and WAD episodes, and thus enhance resilience of IMTs in future disasters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalTheoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science
StateAccepted/In press - 2022


  • adaptation
  • cognitive systems
  • disasters
  • incident management
  • Resilience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics


Dive into the research topics of 'Analyzing work-as-imagined and work-as-done of incident management teams using interaction episode analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this