st. cloud interactive health communications

St. Cloud






Hybrid Vigor

Global Health








St. Cloud Survey

Dear Colleague, 

I would greatly appreciate your help. Below is a key informant survey on technology models and tools for collaborative problem-solving in public health. You are part of a small pilot group of broad-thinking professionals giving viewpoints from different sectors:  government, academic, non-profit, and commercial.  Each response will be read carefully and you will receive a summary.

Thank you for responding by the end of Monday, May 15th, 2000.

This survey has 11 questions and should take 15-40 minutes, depending upon the number of links you explore in question #8.

Internet technology has redefined time and distance. It is extending the consequences, intended and unintended, of societal and corporate decisions.  We are learning how profoundly these decisions affect our public health challenges. As public health matures with the global information infrastructure, it becomes more important to:

  • work across public/private sectors,  
  • understand health in the context of complex and rapidly evolving systems (social, economic, technological, environmental), and
  • ensure that everyone involved is at the "virtual" discussion table.  

What kinds of technologies will help us to build deep relationships among varied stakeholders? What kinds of technologies will help us to share in the creation of knowledge bases for innovation and better decision-making?

Your replies will help chart this emerging landscape, from West African countries rebuilding after devastating wars to epidemiologists tracking the effects of animal feed antibiotics in groundwater in local communities.  Here is a link for more background and examples of current global electronic dialogues.

This survey is for my masters thesis in public health and has received approval from the University of Washington Human Subjects Division. Your name, e-mail and IP address will not be recorded.  Data will be presented in the aggregate and no individual respondent will be able to be identified in reports. 

         Thank you for your time.   Warm regards, Jean Wooldridge  

"Technology Features of a Public Health Internet Virtual Collaboratory"

This survey assumes that broadband access will be a reality within the next ten years for a substantial portion of workplaces and homes and that national and global efforts for digital enfranchisement will accelerate.

1. How is your work distributed among societal sectors?


2. What are your major areas of professional activity?
(Choose as many as needed.)

Behavioral Health Research
Emergency Medicine
Graphic Design & Advertising
Industrial Liaison
International Development and International Public Health
Library Science
Political Science
Public Health
Software Development

3. What is the size of the institution in which you do the majority of your work?

1 - 9 10-99 100-499 500-999 1000-1999 2000 or more

4. What is your gender?

male female

5. Following are some activities that can be done online. How useful are current Internet tools (e.g., email, video, NetMeeting) for groups with diverse members*, for each of these activities?

(*e.g. varying in culture, physical ability, gender, group interaction style, language, learning style, literacy - reading, medical, scientific, quantitative, emotional, perspectives of professional disciplines or social activism, technology access)

Conducting survey research
Making decisions on allocating resources
Making decisions on policy
Participating in conference planning and conferences
Participating in committee work
Participating in/Providing Professional Continuing Education
Problem-solving (from identifying problems to implementing solutions)
Writing a book/journal article/report/news story

6. How useful are current Internet tools in addressing the needs of online collaborators who vary widely in the following categories?

Culture (e.g., cross-cultural translations for building trust)
Differently abled (e.g., visually or hearing impaired)
Group interaction style (e.g., roles in group commonly taken)
Learning style (e.g., visual, kinesthetic, aural)
Literacy as it applies to different areas (e.g., reading, medical, scientific, quantitative, emotional)
Perspectives from people in professional disciplines or in grassroots activism which are reflected in diverse values, concepts, vocabulary, and thinking patterns
Technology for accessing information (e.g., narrowband, broadband)

7. The Internet tools in this survey are sometimes referred to as the "middleware/service layer" or "interface" of the GII (Global Information Infrastructure). There doesn't appear to be a common taxonomy (list of categories) or vocabulary for discussing these tools across professions. This would be useful to monitor needs and emerging tools in different sectors, so that resources could be directed best for basic research, applied and translation research, and diffusion.  Are there people and/or institutions working on taxonomies that you find useful? Please describe.

8. How useful would each of the following tool categories be in creating a collaborative, cross-disciplinary, decision-making environment for solving public health problems? (Please spend most of your time here. Have fun. ISDN speed or higher is best for the links. Web links either show explanatory text or demonstrate selected applications. Here is how to "stay" in this survey. Web links will open in a small window in the upper left hand corner of the tool bar; maximize to see the example. Only close with the regular farthest upper right hand "x" on your screen. You will stay in this survey site. Be sure to see SmartMoney's Market Map.)

a. Affective Learning or Computer-mediated Emotional Management/Intelligence

(e.g., Digital Story-Telling-Dana Atchley, Village Telecenters-Lincos and GreenStarDartmouth Interactive Media Lab's Virtual Clinic for Primary Care of the HIV/AIDS PatientRippleEffects, Inc., Institute of Heartmath, Hay Group's Emotional Competence Framework)

b. Agent Technology 

(e.g, shopbots, for knowledge capture/mining, decision support, alert/reminders, push for news services, subscriptions, web companion for single/multiple sites, rating systems for trust-building, multi-agent collaboration, collaborative filtering , negotiation algorithms, memory-based learning, nanotechnology applications) (e.g., Overview Paper by Pattie Maes, Autonomy, Open Ratings)

c. Commercial groupware for many-to-many or one-to-many

(e.g., Lotus Products, WebX and WebX QuickTour, NetMeeting Features, NetPodium)

d. Data visualization 

(e.g., Semio's Map Discovery, Cartia's Themescape, Richard Saul Wurman's  UnderstandingUSA - take more time to load but worth it)) 

e. Databases that consolidate interdisciplinary information not generally available in one place 

(e.g. SmartMoney's Market Map, Community of Science's services, National Institute of Standards and Technology's Advanced Technology Program's Funded Projects Database

f. Decision support systems 

(e.g., Problem Knowledge Coupler's Tour for clinical point-of-care decisions, requires and can download Flash 4.0 Macromedia)l

g. Email (plain, with graphic or video attachments)


h. Filtering technology for linking people with common characteristics 


i. Geographic information systems (GIS)

 (e.g. displaying infrastructures, such as IBM Collaborative GIS, Herbert Resource Information Centre Australia and Herbert River Atlas - more time to load)  

j. Language translation software


k. 360 degree photo rendering 

(e.g., Dale Chilhuly in Jerusalem #3 Red Spears - requires QuickTime, Seattle in the Round - Pike Place Market))

l. Naptser file-sharing technology


m. Pattern recognition software  and Social network analysis

(e.g. Partek's Pro 2000 and screen shots) and (e.g. Valdis Kreb 's work and Internet analysis)

n. Personal profiling technology 

(e.g., Engage's AudienceNet, and's "new for you" links)

o. Simulation software 

(e.g., scenario modeling with complexity theory, games like The SIMS)

p. Wireless appliances

(e.g., smart clothes and smart rooms at MIT Media Lab with Sandy Pentland 


q. Video (teleconferencing, website, etc.)


r. Other:

9. Now that you've looked at the categories and tested a few links, which three tool categories do you think offer the best opportunities for private/public partnerships in the next 5 years? (Please check three.)

a. Affective Learning and Computer-Mediated Emotional Management
b. Agent Technology
c. Commercial groupware for many-to-many or one-to-many
d. Data visualization
e. Databases that consolidate interdisciplinary information not generally available in one place
f.  Decision support systems
g. Email
h. Filtering technology for linking people with common characteristics
i.  Geographic information systems
j.  Language translation software
k. 360 degree photo rendering
l.  Naptser technologies
m. Pattern recognition software and Social network analysis
n.  Personal profiling technology
o.  Simulation software
p.  Universal viewer technology for retaining format for text, video, graphics
q.  Video
r.  Other:

10. In thinking about the above categories of tools, which ones most need more resources for basic research, applied/translational research, or diffusion? Please give examples. 

a) basic research 

b) translational/applied research 

c) diffusion (linking audiences with tools they need)

11. What other thoughts or advice do you have? (e.g., stay away from "X", focus on "Y")

     Thank you for your valuable insights.  I will send you a summary.  Jean




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