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Use Case Example: Collaborative Brainstorming for Online Problem Solving



Collaborative Brainstorming for Online Problem Solving


A researcher has a broad, not yet fully-scoped geospatial problem and would like to get feedback from other CyberGIS members about how address it using CyberGIS.

Initial Status



Discussion participant


Login component



Researcher created a new topical forum, since nothing on the topic came up in the Forum database, and added a brainstorming discussion. His new forum is posted to the Gateway’s news feed (Facebook-style).

Basic Flow

Step-by-step Workflow

  1. A CyberGIS member reads the news feed and clicks on the forum link.
  2. A new Collaboration page opens and the forum is loaded, the open discussion is highlighted. [Collaboration page could be on another tab, could be a dashboard with additional functionality such as online chat, to-dos, calendar].
  3. Discussion participant clicks on highlighted discussion link.
  4. Login to the forum discussion - the interface to PGIST, occurs as background process using CyberGIS credentials.
  5. Discussion participant responds to researcher’s question and identifies keywords, which PGIST uses to create themes.
  6. Participant ideas and generated themes serve as the basis for structured discussion. Throughout the discussion both can be modified until consensus has been reached.
  7. Researcher closes discussion after a final response period.

Post Conditions

Possible states at end of use case

Discussion is closed, no longer appears in participant’s active discussion list on the Collaboration page.

Researcher devises research strategy based on brainstorming, and begins analysis. See PGIST Use Case: Collaborative Analysis.

Alternative Flows

Optional alternative flows

  1. The researcher specifies CyberGIS members to be invited to the discussion.
  2. The discussion appears in the 'My Discussions' list on the Collaboration page.
  3. Discussion participant clicks on highlighted discussion link or can unsubscribe from the discussion.
  4. Flow continues as described in Basic Flow.