Customizing a maturity model for the evaluation of the development of shared situational awareness and the utilization of spatial information

Jaana Mäkelä

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisCollection of Articles


    This dissertation investigates an organization's maturity in terms of sharing and utilizing relevant information in order to reach its objectives. In disaster management, the timely sharing of information makes possible adequate shared situational awareness (SSA), which is a prerequisite for the effective coordination of actions and the management of resources. Therefore, actors would like to increase their competence to create SSA. Spatial information and spatial methods could support both public and private organizations in improving their productivity and developing innovative solutions to tackle today's global challenges, such as climate change and an aging population. Because of a lack of awareness and competence, organizations have not been able to use the potential of spatial information. In this state of affairs, in both application domains tools are needed to assess the current state of competence, to set a roadmap for organizational improvement, and to assess the effects of development. In this study, a formal process for the development and use of a customized maturity model was developed. Two customized maturity models were created for multiactor disaster management organizations and one GIS maturity model was developed for individual public and private organizations. The maturity models for disaster management were used and evaluated in Search and Rescue and ICT exercises. The models are based on the essential indicators of shared situational awareness, such as the creation of trust, the communication of information requirements, the timely sharing of information, the coverage of shared information, and human agents' commitment and will to collaborate. The GIS maturity model was used and evaluated in five organizations that were using spatial information. The indicators of the GIS maturity model measure the maturity of the organization's internal spatial infrastructure, the use of spatial information in internal core processes and customer services, and the commitment and the will of both managers and employees to act for the comprehensive utilization of spatial information. The main conclusion is that even when technical infrastructure and common applications exist, the systems intelligent behavior of human beings - commitment and the will to act towards the achievement of common goals - is crucial for the sharing and utilization of information. Therefore, the indicators of systems intelligent behavior should be included in customized maturity models for disaster management and organizations using spatial information. The research indicates that the creation of trust is important for spatially enabled organizations as well.
    Translated title of the contributionKypsyysmallin räätälöinti jaetun tilannetietoisuuden muodostamisen ja paikkatietojen hyödyntämisen arviointia varten
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor's degree
    Awarding Institution
    • Aalto University
    • Virrantaus, Kirsi-Kanerva, Supervising Professor
    • Ahonen-Rainio, Paula, Thesis Advisor
    Print ISBNs978-952-60-5412-4
    Electronic ISBNs978-952-60-5413-1
    Publication statusPublished - 2013
    MoE publication typeG5 Doctoral dissertation (article)


    • disaster management
    • shared situational awareness
    • utilization of spatial information
    • maturity model
    • customization
    • systems intelligence


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