Adopting a metaverse-based workspace to support research team collaboration: a pilot study from an academic health informatics laboratory

JAMIA Open. 2023 Feb 27;6(1):ooad010. doi: 10.1093/jamiaopen/ooad010. eCollection 2023 Apr.


OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to understand how a metaverse-based (virtual) workspace can be used to support the communication and collaboration in an academic health informatics lab.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A survey of lab members (n = 14) was analyzed according to a concurrent triangulation mixed methods design. The qualitative survey data were organized according to the Capability, Opportunity, Motivation, Behavior (COM-B) model and combined to generate personas that represent the overall types of lab members. Additionally, scheduled work hours were analyzed quantitatively to complement the findings of the survey feedback.

RESULTS: Four personas, representative of different types of virtual workers, were developed using the survey responses. These personas reflected the wide variety of opinions about virtual work among the participants and helped to categorize the most common feedback. The Work Hours Schedule Sheet analysis showed the low number of possible collaboration opportunities that were utilized compared to the number available.

DISCUSSION: We found that informal communication and co-location were not supported by the virtual workplace as we had originally planned. To solve this issue, we offer 3 design recommendations for those looking to implement their own virtual informatics lab. First, labs should establish common goals and norms for virtual workplace interactions. Second, labs should carefully plan the virtual space layout to maximize communication opportunities. Finally, labs should work with their platform of choice to address technical limitations for their lab members to improve user experience. Future work includes a formal, theory-guided experiment with consideration on ethical and behavioral impact.

PMID:36860416 | PMC:PMC9969827 | DOI:10.1093/jamiaopen/ooad010


Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Generated by Feedzy