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The coordination between train traffic controllers and train drivers: a distributed cognition perspective on railway
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Division of Visual Information and Interaction.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0159-9628
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Division of Visual Information and Interaction. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Computerized Image Analysis and Human-Computer Interaction.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4714-5253
Högskolan i Skövde, Institutionen för informationsteknologi.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0946-7531
2019 (English)In: Cognition, Technology & Work, ISSN 1435-5558, E-ISSN 1435-5566, Vol. 21, no 3, p. 417-443Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Although there has long been a call for a holistic systems perspective to better understand real work in the complex domain of railway traffic, prior research has not strongly emphasised the socio-technical perspective. In operational railway traffic, the successful planning and execution of the traffic are the product of the socio-technical system comprised by both train drivers and traffic controllers. This paper presents a study inspired by cognitive ethnography with the aim to characterise the coordinating activities that are conducted by train traffic controllers and train drivers in the work practices of the socio-technical system of Swedish railway. The theoretical framework of distributed cognition (DCog) is used as a conceptual and analytical tool to make sense of the complex railway domain and the best practices as they are developed and performed “in the wild”. The analysis reveals a pattern of collaboration and coordination of actions among the workers and we introduce the concept of enacted actionable practices as a key concern for understanding how a successfully executed railway traffic emerges as a property of the socio-technical system. The implications for future railway research are briefly discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 21, no 3, p. 417-443
Keywords [en]
Distributed cognition, DCog, Railway, Rail human factors
National Category
Interaction Technologies
Research subject
Interaction Lab (ILAB)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-364088DOI: 10.1007/s10111-018-0513-zISI: 000478042500005Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85051644932OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-364088DiVA, id: diva2:1258069
Funder
Swedish Transport AdministrationAvailable from: 2018-10-23 Created: 2018-10-23 Last updated: 2019-09-27Bibliographically approved

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Andreasson, RebeccaJansson, AndersLindblom, Jessica

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