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Type: Journal Article
Author(s): Frank A. Drews; Laura K. Siebeneck; Thomas J. Cova
Publication Date: 2015

Decision making in complex environments has been investigated in many domains, including medicine, aviation, business, and police operations. However, how incident commanders (ICs) make protective-action recommendations (PARs) to populations exposed to wildfire risks is underinvestigated. In this study we examined the effect of expertise on IC non-time-limited information search and decision making and how ICs update information during the evolution of complex, computer-simulated wildfire scenarios. The results indicate that higher expertise reduces the overall amount of information being searched for, without affecting the quality of PAR decisions. In addition, a statistical trend suggests that information updating during the progression of the scenario involves disproportionate less-static information versus dynamic information. Finally, ICs demonstrated a strong preference for evacuation recommendations over alternative recommendations, even when an evacuation may result in less optimal outcomes.

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Citation: Drews, Frank A.; Siebeneck, Laura; Cova, Thomas. 2015. Information search and decision making in computer-based wildfire simulations. Journal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making 9(3):229-240.

Cataloging Information

Alaska    California    Eastern    Great Basin    Hawaii    Northern Rockies    Northwest    Rocky Mountain    Southern    Southwest    International    National
  • decision making
  • fire management
  • information
  • PAR - protective-action recommendations
  • simulation
  • wildfires
Record Last Modified:
Record Maintained By: FRAMES Staff (
FRAMES Record Number: 25717