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Journal of Interactive Media

Editor-in-Chief: Ziegler, Jürgen

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Volume 15, Issue 3


Big Data in a Crisis? Creating Social Media Datasets for Crisis Management Research

Christian Reuter / Thomas Ludwig / Christoph Kotthaus / Marc-André Kaufhold / Elmar von Radziewski / Volkmar Pipek
Published Online: 2017-01-11 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/icom-2016-0036


A growing body of research in the area of information systems for crisis management is based on data from social media. After almost every larger disaster studies emerge with the focus on the specific use of social media. Much of this research is based on Twitter data, due to the ease of access of this (mainly public) data, compared to (more closed) data, such as Facebook or Google+. Based on the experience gained from a research project on social media in emergencies and our task to collect social media data sets for other partners, we present the design and evaluation of a graphical user interface that supports those stakeholders (such as emergency services or researchers) that are interested in creating social media datasets for further crisis management research. We do not specifically focus on the analysis of social media data. Rather we aim to support the gathering process and how actors without sophisticated technical skills can be supported to get what they want and especially need: relevant social media data. Within this article, we present a practice-oriented approach and implications for designing tools that support the collection of social media data as well as future work.

Keywords: Social Media; Big Data; Datasets; Crisis Management


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About the article

Christian Reuter

Christian Reuter, PhD, studied Information Systems at the University of Siegen and the École Supérieure de Commerce de Dijon, France and received a PhD for his work on (inter-)organizational collaboration technology design for crisis management. Before his scientific engagement he was full time consultant for a telecommunication corporation. He has acquired, conducted and managed national and international consultancy and research projects and has published scientific articles in information systems, human-computer interaction, crisis management and social media. He is divisional director for crisis information systems at the University of Siegen and voluntary founding chairman of the section “HCI in safety-critical systems” of the German Informatics Society.

Thomas Ludwig

Thomas Ludwig, PhD, studied Information Systems at the University of Siegen and the University of Newcastle (Australia). He received his PhD for his work on the design of ICT Tools for researching complex information infrastructures. He holds the divisional direction of Cyber-Physical Systems at the University of Siegen, where he published lots of research articles in the fields of computer-supported cooperative work, human-computer interaction, crisis management as well as internet-of-things.

Christoph Kotthaus

Christoph Kotthaus, Dipl. Wirt.-Inf., studied Information Systems at the University of Siegen and the University of Newcastle, Australia. He did his degree at a rail technology company about mobile device management. After three years of experience as a project manager in this company he returned to the University of Siegen to do his PhD. He continues the work he did during his studies as a research assistant in the domain of crisis management and also works at a research project related to Cyber-Physical Systems as a project leader. His research is focused on computer-supported cooperative work and human-computer interaction in both these domains.

Marc-André Kaufhold

Marc-André Kaufhold, M.Sc., studied Information Systems at the University of Siegen. In his master thesis, he investigated the applicability and potentials of Flow theory in human-computer interaction. During his study he primarily assisted in the research projects InfoStrom (2010–2013, BMBF) and EmerGent (2014–2017, EU). He now works as a research assistant at the SME Graduate School and Chair of Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Media while pursuing his PhD. His research is focused on IT-supported crisis management, volunteerism in social media, and Flow theory.

Elmar von Radziewski

Elmar von Radziewski, B.Sc. in Information Systems, is a student of Information Systems at the University of Siegen. He graduated as a B.Sc. in 2016 and now works as a student research assistant while pursuing his M.Sc. degree. His primary research interest is user-centered software development based upon the combination of interview-based empirical work with agile development approaches. In his work, he assumes the roles of both a software designer and a programmer.

Volkmar Pipek

Volkmar Pipek, PhD., studied Computer Science and Economics at the University of Kaiserslautern and received a PhD degree in Information Processing Science from the Laboratory of HCI and Group Technology at the University of Oulu, Finland. He is Professor for Computer Supported Cooperative Work and Social Media at the Institute for Information Systems at the University of Siegen, Germany.

Published Online: 2017-01-11

Published in Print: 2016-12-01

Citation Information: i-com, Volume 15, Issue 3, Pages 249–264, ISSN (Online) 2196-6826, ISSN (Print) 1618-162X, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/icom-2016-0036.

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