Spring 2009 Symposium


Using Collaboration Technology to Tackle Wicked Problems
By John Nosek - Temple University

Date : Thursday March 26th, 2009
Time : 7:30 PM
Location: Armstrong Auditorium, Caputo Hall 210

Tackling wicked problems entails incomplete discovery, inaccurate interpretation, and imperfect action that will fail in someway and likely alter the situation in some unknowable way. Making sense of wicked problems demands intense, deep collaboration among participants, many of whom can be physically distributed and come from different groups and organizations. This talk explores problems in this messy group process and limitations of current collaboration technology to support it. A simple model is presented to categorize functionality so that it is easier to make sense of emerging collaboration technology. An example of an advanced collaboration technology will be presented to illustrate what advanced functionality entails. Preliminary results of using this technology in student group projects to reduce freeloading and improve student performance and attitudes towards group work will be discussed.

John Nosek is Professor of Computer & Information Sciences at Temple University. He has published widely on a broad range of information technology topics. For over a decade, he has contributed to the emerging field of Collaboration Science and Technology. He continues to focus on development of collaboration theories and theory based technology that will improve anytime, anyplace collaborative work by better managing the social, cognitive, and procedural complexities inherent in joint effort. His seminal work in collaborative programming has influenced major software engineering areas, including eXtreme Programming and Agile Development. He is Senior Editor of the Journal of Information Systems Management; Associate Editor of the International Journal of e-Collaboration; and Associate Editor of the Advances in E-Collaboration(AECOB) Book Series. He has guest co-edited two recent special issues on collaboration technology. His work has been funded by the National Science Foundation, The U.S. Navy, The U.S. Air Force, private companies, semi-governmental organizations and foundations, including The Ben Franklin Partnership and The Lattanze Foundation. He has also worked with a number of small and large companies, including Lockheed Martin. Recently, he assisted the European Commission in setting funding priorities for Collaborative Work Environments and completed successive appointments as Scholar-in-Residence in Collaborative Work at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Dr. Nosek is a retired Navy Captain and holds degrees from The United States Naval Academy, Villanova University, and Temple University.