Second workshop on geographic information usability – March 2010

In March 2009 Ordnance Survey together with the Human Factors group at the University of Nottingham, ran a workshop on the usability of geographic information.  Bringing together a new grouping of researchers from across disciplines of Human Factors, HCI, Computer Science and Geographic Information Science, the aim of the workshop was to share perspectives on research challenges for investigating usability of data products – in particular geographic information products.  In so doing we wished to help build an interdisciplinary network of contacts in this field and identify priority areas for further investigation.

Findings from the workshop were presented in a paper at AGI2009, and in a report which is available on the Ordnance Survey’s website.  These confirmed there is indeed a clear need to focus on usability of information, as well as on interfaces used to access information.  Rationale centred on the fact that current research and established methodologies in the field of product usability focus on objects such as devices, and on computer interfaces, with not so much focus on usability of data products such as digital geographic information.

The March 2010 workshop

As with the 2009 workshop, this one day workshop aims to bring together people researching usability of data/information across different disciplines, including Human Factors, HCI, Computer Science, Geographic Information Science.

The objective will be to share case studies on theory and/or application of methods for investigating usability of data or information, in particular geographic data/ information.

We hope the workshop will:

  • Identify theoretical frameworks and methodologies, through a range of case studies, for applying usability evaluation to data or information.
  • Help to build further an interdisciplinary network of research contacts in this field
  • Form the basis for a publication

If you would like to participate…

Please send a short position paper (around 1000 words), based on a case study where you have addressed issues of usability of geographic information, to the contact details below by 29th January 2010.

A workshop agenda and venue details will be sent once we have all position papers.

Support for reasonable travel and accommodation costs may be provided – if you may need assistance please contact me (details below).

Jenny Harding, Ordnance Survey Research Phone: +44 (0)23 8079 2052


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