Distributed Collaboration Structure (DCS)

Distributed Collaboration Structure (DCS)

This is a topic page to show an overview of a sub field of Integrated operations, describing the knowledge developed by the IO Center

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The bounds of an IO team can not be clearly defined, and due to the complex and fuzzy nature of IO teams, it may make more sense to talk about Distributed Collaboration Structures (DCS) instead of IO teams. A DCS is a set of distinct, inter-dependent collaborative activities that are required to achieve an operational goal. The quality of collaboration between different participants in a DCS may have an effect on the quality of decisions and outcome from a collaboration session, and thus the goal achievement of the DCS.
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IO teams consist of representatives from different disciplines or departments, and participants at different locations. Collaboration occurs through collaboration technology like video conferencing. An important initial finding is that the bounds of an IO team can not be clearly defined. There is a set of core team members, but in addition there are more peripheral members who are only sporadically involved in the team. The roles in an IO team may be represented by different persons in different situations. Team members are also usually members of more than one team, and have a departmental belonging in addition to their team belonging(s). Due to the complex nature of IO teams, it may make more sense to talk about Distributed Collaboration Structures (DCS) instead of IO teams. A DCS can be defined as the organization of a set of distinct, inter-dependent collaborative activities, which are all required to achieve an operational goal that: (1) cannot be achieved by co-located people on their own, and (2) cannot be achieved through a single joint collaboration session.

The DCS concept takes into account the whole structure of collaboration that is required to achieve a specific operational goal. This structure includes main collaboration meetings; typically conducted via video conference between collaboration rooms at different locations; less formal collaboration sessions going on between members of the DCS, as well as collaboration between and synchronization of different DCSs. The quality of collaboration between different participants in a DCS may have an effect on the quality of decisions and outcome from a collaboration session, and thus the goal achievement of the DCS.

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