Coupling models of complexity and models of cognition in a systems design process


Pär-Anders Albinsson,Nils Dahlbäck,Magnus Morin


Work can be complex for several reasons, and various kinds of complexity put different demands on human behaviour and problem solving. We argue that there is a need for a tighter coupling between the characteristics of complexity and the characteristics of cognition in systems design for complex work. This paper outlines a proposal for such a framework. The framework couples existing models of complexity with well-known models of human skill and cognitive styles to provide a tool for capturing system and personnel needs in systems design processes. It relies on the identification of sources of complexity in the work domain, and can be used in a method-independent fashion to guide predictions on cognitive demands. The development of a military command and control support system for helicopter units is used to exemplify the use of the proposed framework.