Social networks and coordination of expertise: a qualitative study

Ye Ryung Kim-Chung*, Liaquat Hossain, Kon Shing Kenneth Chung, Andrew Edwards

*Corresponding author for this work

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


This preliminary research investigates the relationship between properties of social networks and coordination of sharing and access to expertise during disasters, which is extremely important in emergency response during disaster incidents. Therefore, knowing where specialized knowledge (expertise) is located, where it is needed and how it may be brought to bear in timely manner is extremely crucial. We also examine a theoretical model for the inherent role of social network structure, ties and position of actors for gaining access to and sharing of expertise. In this study, we explore specific questions such as-by: How centralization and efficiency in an individual's social network associate with coordination?, and Would network constraint and tie strength in an individual's social network negatively/positively associate with coordination?. The paper provides a theoretical account of how the social network-coordination model is developed and how the model has been preliminary validated by disaster management experts (CIO and managers) from State Emergency Services (SES), NSW, Australia. Results from semi-structured interviews with key managers from SES shows the significance of informal social network roles in their profession, especially for solving disaster management issues. Interviewees elaborate on the point of how social network directly enable their coordination at work. A research framework is also outlined in the conclusion section with directions for future social network analysis and research pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDSS 2.0 - Supporting Decision Making with New Technologies
EditorsGloria Phillips-Wren, Sven Carlsson, Ana Respício, Patrick Brézillon
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781614993995
ISBN (Print)9781614993988
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event IFIP TC8/Working Group 8.3 Conference: DSS 2.0 – Supporting decision making with new technologies - Paris, France
Duration: 2 Jun 20145 Jun 2014

Publication series

NameFrontiers in Artificial Intelligence and Applications
ISSN (Print)0922-6389


Conference IFIP TC8/Working Group 8.3 Conference


  • Coordination theory
  • Disaster management
  • Expertise discovery
  • Social network


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