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SOCIAL STRESS, ~R-HEDLAl~= FORNICATION SYSTEMS, AND IN ~OWC~lIVIrY :~ SPACE STATIONS: A RESEARCH AGE Karen S. Cook INT~DUCT1ON We sheer complexity of the space station program is enough to boggle the mire of any academic trained in a single discipline. Certainly, space station design requires the ultimate In interdisciplinary teamwork and denigration of basic arx] applied pa Trams of research. In this sense, the project demands knowledge an] insights not easily produced An an isolated discipline, be it en~in==rinq, aeronautics or sociology. '~ as a cnalleng mg task and one that shculu call forth the best efforts of those touched by the allure of extending the boundaries of human knowledge. For a sociologist there are a myriad of research problems which come to mind On even a cursory glance into the window of the future as envisioned by those currently Dlanm no the space station program. , _, e ~ _ _ e , ~ _ _ _ ~ ~ _ ~ _ ~ ~ J clearly, a wide range of processes and factors must be taken into account when considering the more social aspects of this enterprise. These include technologist constraints, pressures, -physiologic limits, psychological processes (including cognitive capacities and mativationa~ factors), and the many interfaces between tenant' and machine required b~v the intense interdePendenci~= of human and technoloci~1 forces in snare _ _ -_ ~ As__ Such intense interdependencies in this extreme are much less often observed on earth (with the possible exception of certain medical contexts in which life is tenuously maintained by sheer technological support). Given this reality, one cannot extrapolate easily frog what is known about society as we experience it on earth and "life aloft." It has even been said that humans may become a very different species while in space. Similarly, social systems which emerge to support and maintain life in this context may deviate along many dimensions from those social structures an] processes that are a part of our daily existence and often so "routine" that they are taken for granted. ~ Nothing must He considered as Routine An a novel environment. It must be said at the outset that what we transport from earth in the way of social, norms, rules, shared expectations, roles, etc.) may prove much less functional than we envisioned given a ccm-plet~ly altered social and technological environment. Because we have virbnally no scientific evidence psychological and organizational adaptive mechanisms (e.q. 329
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330 concerning the parameters of life after eighty-four days in space (that is, there is no U.S. experience to rely ony, one is forced to engage An speculation an] extrapolation despite the potential pitfalls. My reading of the documents we have been supplied with concerning the space station program in the l990s and beyond and my very limited exposure to ROSA through a two-day symposium, lead me to several tentative conclusions regarding the most critical social contingencies (besides the issue of conflict addressed by Michener) confronting NASA as it plans for the extended duration existence of groups of individuals in space with limited opportunity for replacement or exit. These critical contingencies include the social and psychological management of stress (regardless of the nature of the stressors) and determination of the most efficient and socially productive mechanisms for handling interpersonal communications (e.g. within the crew, betwe ~ crews of different modules, and between the crew and the "ground," including family melters and friends). The successful management of both stress and interpersonal communications is critical to individual and y~vup-level performance, productivity and ultimately, 'mission success." While there are many other issues which could be investigated profitably from a sociological Perspective, time and space limit the scope of this first foray into life as currently envisioned on space stations. STRESS, INDIVI1~L ~FORMPNCE AND UP PE%ODUCTIV~ Stress has been identified as a contributing factor in the etiology of certain acute and Manic illnesses (e.g. ulcers, high blood pressure, heart attacks, nervous dis ~ ances, etc.~. It has been demonstrated to have consequent== not only for the hearth status of individuals, but also for individual performance, decision-ma-ding and productivity. With respect to spa~-relat=1 research Foushee (1986) shade= that an important goal is "to under stand and munlmize the effects of acute and long_duration stresses on group functioning." Although there is enormous literature on the effects of stress on individuals, researchers have been slow to address the impact of stress on groups. Furthermore, the bulk of the existing research examines the physiologic and psychological consequences of stress. There is much less work on the antcr=~ents of stress, in particular the stresses creaked by social factors (PearlLn, 1982~. Another limitation to existing research is the tendency for investigators especially in experimental work to focus on single, isolated stressors. This work is extremely important, but it does not inform us about the interactive anchor cumulative effects of ~rn~tiple stresso~. Deficit and Measuring Stress The most commonly city definition of sass is Hans Selye's, "the nonspecific, that is, canon, result of any Planar upon the body, be the effect any or somatic." In the tradition of research initial
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331 by Selye (e.g. 1936, 1956, 1974) this "result" or reaction of the body to stress is referred to as the "general adaptation syndromes' LEAS) or "biologic stress syndrome." It consists of an alarm reaction biologically detectable in such organs as the adrenal glands, thymes, lymph nodes and stomach, followed by the stage of resistance accompanied also by marked physiologic responses, then the stage of exhaustion at which point Selye argues the acquired second-stage adaptation is lost. Other researche ~ emphasize the significance of the "cognitive appraisal" of stressors (see Brezn~tz and Goidberger, 1982, etc.), noting the importance of the "subjective, phencmenologi~a~ experience of stress" which lies between the stressor and its effects. Some definitions of stress include reference to cognitive appraisal, others, like Selye's, do not. Currently, there is no agreed upon definition of the term and existing differences reflect major unresolved theoretic=] t~c in the field. Though they disagree on the significance of cognitive appraised, researchers do agree on the common goal of understanding adaptations to stress or the nature of coping mechanisms. Mach of the current research focuses upon specifying the nature of these mechanisms. Before discussing adaptations however, let tic examine the problems associated with the measurement of stress. Varicus approaches have been adopted to the problem of measuring stress; none of them completely satisfactory. One of the most common approaches to Rena DcmcOt, popular over the past two decades because it can be applied outside experim~ta1 settings, is he "life~rents" scale (e.g. Holes and Rahe, 1967) or the modified life events scale (l~hr~ ark Did, 1974a, 1974b). Life~vents typically Ian "bbje~ive events that disrupt or threaten to disrupt the individual's usual activities" (see D ~ end and ~ reran end, 1974b:133, 1984). Events listed on such scales include both he=~th-related (onset of chronic illness, major illness or accident, etc.) and non health-related events such as divorce, separation, increase ~ family income, retirement, death of a spouse, pregnancy or remarriage, etc. (see Thoits, 1981, for a cogent critique of the life-events approach). m e main debate in this research tradition has been over whether or net only undesirable events contribute to stress or whether events that require change either desirable or undesirable produce stress. The latter has been referred to as the "toter change" approach to measuring stress, the former, the "undesirability" approach (Thoits, 1981~. Ihoits (1981) identifies several studies suggesting that only the undesirable changes significantly affect stress levels, although she goes an to critique these studies as well as many of the total change sues for fat ing to include independent indicators of their independent and dependent variables. Her findings also suggest that 'Cohen he~lth-related events are controlled, other undesirable events have small and nonsignificant effects upon psychophysiological distress" (as Measured by reports of psychosomatic symptoms using the MacMillan Health Opinion Survey Index). the main conclusion she draws relevant to current research is that previously well-established correlations between undesirable events and distress may have been inflated *ue to the Operational confounding of hen1th-related items on
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332 the indeperxlent and dependent variable scales." A major contribution of new research on sass wed be to refine existing usurp of stress and to develop more sensitive anal reliable ~asur~nt techniques. Iaboratory research employs quite different methodologies than surrey research, however, as Hoir~ and Tea s (1982:26) poirlt OUt, "lab paradigms An biological science have rennet to isolate stress Ins fee he psy~ologi~8~1 ~ 8~ it con ~ ·~' ~ ~ ~ measurement problems are reduced in this way, little knowledge is ~ inert ~ n ~ ~ e ~ ~ lay of physiologic, ~~ologi~s=8 8 _ ~ ~ _ _ _ '8 ~ * -- ~ 8888_8 ·8 8~ ial ~ at · Hol ~yd a ~ ~ z ~ s (1982:30) ~8aJ1 for "field research that exam mes stress in the psychosocial context" and more descriptive work on the sources of stress "that operate in naturalistic settings." m e space station environment is a "natural" laboratory for this type of research. Multiple Stressors in Space m e reality of space station existence includes the potential for canto and intermittent exposure to multiple stressors. In this regard it is not at all clear that much of the existing research, except that done ~ analogous environments, can be extrapolated to apply to the space station. Both the number and the magnitude of stressors in the space environment is likely to be at the high end of existing scales, and quite possibly off the scale. Only research in rare, high stress situations will contain insights of direct relevance. Sources of potential stress in space stations include sensory deprivation, environmental factors like noise level, crawling, spatial arrangements, and invasion of privacy, as well as isolation, confinement, and the possibility of life-threatening dangers or crises situations. Nickerson in his chapter for this volume includes in the category of potential stressors: weightlessness, unfamiliar motion, motion restriction, sensory and perceptual restriction as well as sleep interference and acute medical problems. Work-related factors like variety and intensity of assigned tasks, and workload, etc. may peso be stressors in the space station environment. hoper (1983) indicate that in many work environments work or job overload is a major stressor. There is sane irrigation that working intensity arc time pressure were factors that contributed to the problems experienced by ~ w FINS aboard the Skylab 4 Mission. Accordi~ to Holrgyd and Lazarus (1982:24), "the individual who is constantly challenged by even relatively innocuous occupational and social demands and who is, as a result, repeatedly mobilized for struggle may be particularly vulnerable to certain disorders (Glass, 1977~." Given the duration of planned space station missions, the cumulative physiological, psychological and social impact of intermittent and continue exposure to multiple stressors must be investigated. Another significant factor in space stations related to multiple stressors is the recognition that the stressors will be produced by quite different types of events and forces. Stressor~ may be produced both by the astronaut's home environment, to the extent that s/he has · ~
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333 information about significant events occurring on earth (e.g. ~ the lives of his/her close relatives and friends, etc.), and by life aloft. Within the apse capsule, factors contributing to stress are environmentally indho d resulting in both p ysiological and/or psychological distress ~e well as socially induced, created by factors associated with the ~ter~nal ernrir~nt, especially the intense interred of the crew fez. Since both Eibysiologi~al and psychological factors have been given more consideration in the existing literature, ~ will emphasize the social forces likely to indu<::e stress. Identifying Socially Pod - stressors Outside of the life-events tradition and research focusing upon national stress (e.g. Cooper and Payne, 1978), there have been few investigations of stress produced by interpersonal factors in small group sett logs (Levine and Scotch, 1970). Potential causes of stress settings requiring intense interdependence among group members include hectic personality conflicts, incompatibilities in interpersonal orientation an] style, an inefficient or inequitable division of labor, a lack of perceived 1agit;macy cancer m ng the allocation of leadership responsible ities or aubbority, the inequitable allocation of individual or collective rewards, lack of a clear definition of role or task responsible ities, uncertainty regarding the timing, coordination or sequencing of related tasks especially when synchronization is a critical factor, and the arbitrary or inappropriate exercise of authority or influence (i.~. violating role prescriptions or norms conocrning the use of private timed. Many of these factors have been demonstrated to have significant impacts upon group functioning non~ssful situation ~ may or may not be exacerbates ~ si - cations of high Ire. Pearl or ~unta~n~li~bing teams i~icat-= that deer periods of high stress many of then= problems became earthly salient ad ~ some coca= result in aborts attends to reach We summit. Int ~ r ~ 1 conflicts appear to be a major problem for many ~ itions especially when the goal of reaching the summit is highly values by all and where there is a great d=~1 of uncertainty about achieving the goa1. Connors (3985:147) also notes that in s;~3ation roe arch, 'members of isolated and confined groups who were incompatible showoff increased stress, withdrawal, and territorial behavior. ~ Many of these potential stressors have not ~ ermine in the context of group functions primarily Ruse the predominant Ides in this area of ir~ry has In one of ir~ivi~1 functior~ir~. ~ will Dent Are upon the limitations of such a Entice in a s~ibs~erlt section of the paper.
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334 Mongering Stress Relate to the problem of measuring stress are identifying the ante—ents of stress is the prdblen of monitoring sages. Unc~n~sive Romania for anchoring Swiss at bath ~ individual (physiologic and psyc~hologi~1) petrel and the group leered need devel ~ t, given the potential dele~=rious consequences of high levels of stress for individual and group functioning. An important byproduct of such monitoring is that it will give us same insight into the interactive and Negative impact of various stressors. Furthermore, it will enable us to ads issues still urKler Agate r~ardir~ He extent to dish the effects are linear, cUzVil~=r, or approximate a ste~function (or three hold function). It may also be the case that the effects of Canaan stressors are Story given that not all the effects are potentially negative. me positive impact of stress has been given little attention In the literature. Personal ~acter~stics, Crew CX—osition and Stress As several authors have suggest, the "right stuff" may be the 'dry stuff" den it Ad; to the selection of crew ~ who will not only have the nectary Animal and professional skills, but w;11 also have the psychological arm social cx~etencies Reid for the creation of effective Ant ~ rsonal relations and relatively s ~ h grasp functioning on space station 'fissions." According to Biersner and Hogan (3984:495), veterans believe that "social compatibility is as important as technical skills for overall Antarctic adjustment" to isolation. Social competence will become even more critical as a basis for selection and training in the future as NOVA envisions shorter training periods for some astronauts (e.g. teacher and congress=embers ~ space programs). me potential for commercial joint ventures with NINA not only increases crew he~enei=, but also beans that same apace station Seers ~ the U.S. Mule will In all lik~ihoa] rx~ have Me benefit of intense N~;A training (and selection). Intriguing research by He~rei~h and his colleagues (e.g. He~ich et al., 1980) on this basic topic suggests that at least one aracteristic typically associated with the "right stuff" constellation of traits, interpersonal competitiveness, may be dysfunctional for producing smooth group functioning depending upon the mix of personnel and the'' traits in any particular crew. As Connors (1985:155) notes, Helmreich et al. (1980) "hypothesize that the combined interests of task accomplishment and social compatibility will be best served if crew Seers straw a strong work and mastery orientation, but relatively little campetitiveness." - Group Decision~ g Ur~=r Stress Relearn of particular interest to 2~;A is Me research on the relationship between stress and decision-makir~ which Eric that
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335 the experience of stress generally interferes with psychological processes relater to effective decision-m2Xing. Janis (1982), for example, reports the following reactions associated with stress during decision-making: (~) narrowing of attention span and range of perceived alternatives, (2) reduction in problem-solving capabilities, (3) oversight of long-term consequences, (4) inefficiency In information sear h, t5) premature closure, and (6) with intense fear, there is also temporary loss of perceptual acuity and perceptual-motor coordination (Daffy, 1962). Evidence further suggests that accelerating time pressure greases the probability of these reactions, although clearly more r ~ is needed on the temporal aspects of stress reactions as well as sibilation specific/individual difference interaction effects. (Individuals in certain situations are likely to respond differently both to stress and to the demands of the decision-making tack.) Janis (3982) also specifies five basic patterns of dec~sion-making under stress. The first four patterns in the list represent ''5efective" patterns of response, the fifty is the term Janis uses for the most adaptive respo ~ e pattern. Observed patterns of response under stress delude: (1) unconflicbeJ inertia (2) unconflicted change (3) defensive avoidance (4) hypervigilance, and (5) vigilance. Of the four defective response patterns, hypervigilance is found to be the dc~unant reaction under conditions of high stress or n~ar-panic. As Janis (1982:77) note=, "Ex~=c~ive alertness to all signs of potential brat rats ~ diffusion of attention...one of the main so of cognitive inefficiency whenever scone fines hypervigilant, and it prc}'ably a ~ 3unts for sam of be failures to meet the criteria for effective dec~sion-malci~." R~U1LS also sew est that other problems emerge in high stress situations. "slang with cognitive constriction there is a marked tendency toward stereotyped thinking in terms of oversimplified categories and reliance on Oversimplified decision rules" (Ja m s, 1982:781. Two conditions appear to enhance the probability of hypervigilanoe occurring in stressful situations: unconflicted inertia (or the failure to react to early warrungs) and defensive avoidance (e.g. procrastination). Additional factors identified by Janis as associated with the antecedents of hypervigilan~= are the lack of contact with family members or other support persons, lack of perceived control and lack of preparatory information alcut potential stressful events.
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336 The prevention of "defective" patterns of response in threaten mg situations has focused An recent years upon several strategies including "benign preexposure to the threatening situation, stress inoculation via preparatory communications" and various types of relaxation techniques designed to mitigate physiologic reactions (Janis, 1982:82; see also, Janis et al., 1982~. Research on these techniques and the extent to which they are successful under specific circumstance== continua. Extrapolation to situations likely to be encountered in space stations must be done m~reful~y. Some techniques may be effective for single stressors, but less effective in the face of multiple stressors. Aga m, further research is needed. Certainly, however, this research gives us some clues as to problems associated with decision-making in highly stressful contexts. A Comment on the Limits of Medic and Psycho~ogi~1 Models of Stress: The underlying framework a researcher adopts to the analysis of a problem often circumscribes both the nature of scientific inquiry as well as conceptions of potential solutions. Thus it is not surprising that medical research on stress tends to exam me primarily physiologic response patterns and the impact of drugs on the functioning of the individual undergoing stress. Psychologists similarly focus on cognitive and emotional factors, examining individual differences associated with cognitive appraisals of stress and reactions. The solutions they consider include biofeedback, stress "inoculation", and various types of individual training and therapeutic techniques. All of this research is necessary since the problem entails both physiologic and psychologist dimensions. What is missing, however, flus much of the current work is the investigation of the system properties of stress and exam mation of solutions to the problems created by multiple stressors at the group or collective level lasso sometimes called the system level. Inquiry of this type would examine the interpersonal Dynamics related to stress responses and adaptive strategies rather than treating the problem purely from an ~ntraindividual perspective. Adoption of an Interpersonal or system level perspective would lead to quite different conceptions of adaptive mechanisms. In Connors (1985:146) words, "Given that future missions will require increase levels of cooperative functionir~, selection and trainer'; procures ~st not only yield effective individuals, they st yield effective g~vups." The dominant Characteristic of Efface station missions in the near future involving 6-8 crew m ~ cars marooned in space for approximately ninety day intervals of the high degree of interdependence among the group members (and possibly between groups in different Accuses at some point). Stressors which significantly impact any single group member will, of necessity, influence group function~ng--even if it simply entails the reassignment of duties or tasks for brief periods of time or temporary isolation of a group member. IT addition, group members may be impacted similarly by stressors and thus collective solutions should be explored. Strategies might be developed, treating the Group ~~ a social system (as Michener does) of interdependent parts and group members sight be trained in specific response patterns through a division of labor. For example, roles could be assigned such that each
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337 attends to a specific problem associated with inefficient decision-ma-ding under high stress. One crew member might be assigned the task of vigilance with respect to only alternatives, another to long-term conseguen~=, etc. and coordination might be achieved either by an assigned group leader or some sort of computerized decision-aide. Ccmputer-a'~ed systems could be developed which help to meliorate common deficiencies observed in cognitive processing during peak periods of stress. Coping strategies of this type are more like Janis' suggestion that an appo~nt=d "devil's advocate" be used to mitigate the negative consequences of "groupthink." They have the possible advantage that "failure" is not localized in a single individual (typically, the "leader") who ~ st assume full responsibility for group decisions in "crisis" or intensely stressful situations. Furthermore, a clean division of labor also reduces the workload on any single individual under stress.The work on distributed decision-m2Xing by Fischhoff and others may well provide models for this ~ of coping mechanism. Relevant work on computer-aided decision-making should alto be explored. Mediators of Stress and Adaptation In the words of Ho~royd and Lazarus (1982:25), "It has been increasingly acknowledged that health Outcomes are a product of effective coping rather than simply a consequence of the presence or absence of stress." Identifying factors that result in effective coping is an important research agenda item, however current investigations focus more on drug therapy, biofeedback and "cognitive-behavioral" interventions to codify responses to stress and facilitate coping. The social and organizational management of stress, as noted above, has not been examined. Psychological approaches take us one step beyond physiologically focused management strategies, but even they have not been evaluated extensively. Coping mechanisms and adaptation responses form one axis of current research, the second axis is extensive work on factors that ' ~ diate" the stress response. Such factors include individual difference= which relate not only to susceptibility, but also to cognitive appraised and effective coping. Variables incorporated into these investigations are ethnicity, age, gender, occupation, income, level of education, marital state=, health status and ares to social support (i.e. personal resources and network supplied resources), among others. Access to social support, for example, has been demonstrated to mitigate some of the effects of stressful entreats (e.g. Caplan arm Killilea, 1976~. Much of this work is useful for general medical and scier~tific pi, kilt caution must be exercised when attesting to generalize these findings to astronauts and the Apace station ~nriror~nent. me range of variation on same of these variables is quite restric ~ In the astronaut population, although increasing heterogeneity must be assumed along many of these dimensions (i.e. gender, age and ethnicity) in the future.
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338 Rewarm linking gamer to stems, for example, varied of sties Off wan are more susceptible indicate= ~ a to stress (e.g. Kessler arid MeRae, 1981~; given certain levels of stress they report higher levels of distress as reflect Epically In Apology (prim rily self-reports). Pa ear ~ discussed by Kessler art MbI ~ d (1984) documents that waken ten] to be more affected by undesirable life events than men even though they do not report significantly more _ ~ = ~ To___ ~ a IT ~~= ~ ~ ^^ A ~ ___— ~ ~ TV_— _-D ' _~.L~ ::~U~1 Novell Hi- ~~1~:L Olaf l~l~;L~U \1:70~) ~~W~.~.t,. .L=~ r!3::i ==,~ lot t~ that women are more vulnerable to network' events, events that happen to significant others in their networks' than men, and it is this difference that accounts at least An part for previously observed sex differences in responses to stress. Thus, they argue that waken are not "pervasively more vulnerable than men to stress," but vulnerable specifically to stress linked to the important people in their lives as a result of their "greater emotional involvement in the lives of those around them." P=1le (1983) refers to this fact as the "stress of r~r~g~t There are mans unanswered congestions ~n~rnirm the link between _ _ a, , _ _ ~ _ _~_ _~ ~~_~ ret ~_' - ~ .: ~` p~1 ~ ^~' ___ ~ ^_ it__ qua = 1~1 ~ ~~ ~ 1-11~: AL ~Q WIll=1 L - All ~~VI1=U~ ~ lllL' ~= vulnerable to secrets than Pro e astronauts is an open question. FEW ot the existing stud)'== include in their samples waken On such high stress occupations and it may well be that women with high capacities for coping with stress self-select into these occupations (e.g. as is likely the case for women mountain climbers). It should also be noted that many of these studies reporting sex-related stress differences are based on sample day obtained in the 19SOs, 1960s and early 1970s; little evidence exists hack on more recent data including samples of women In more varied occupations contexts and roles. Impact on Productivity: Individual and Grcup-Level Effects The link between stress and productivity has been demonstrated to be somewhat complex. Mangler (1982:94) argues that "the problem of stress is twofold; both the initial autonomic signals and the conditions that generate these signals require some conscious capaci~y...an] therefore interfere with the performance of targeted tasks." What is not clear is specifically how and under what conditions performance is impaired. An fact, as Mangler (1982:96) indicates, like noise, stress reduces "attentional capacity and narrows it to central t~Sks,t' thus if the target task is central , "then autonomous arousal may improve performance." mis depends upon both the centrality of the target bask and specific characteristics of the task, or bask sequence which requires performance. Early research on this topic seemed to suggest that there is a curvilinear relationship between arc usal and performance such that performance is enhanced by moderate levels of arousal, but impaired significantly at both very low and very high levels of arousal. The generality of this effect is still under debate. Mangler (1982:95) concludes that "understanding the relation between efficiency and stress requires an analysis of specific stressors, an approach to arousal that assigns it definable
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339 properties..., and knowledge about the requirements of the task." Research by Baddeley (1972) and others indicates that stress associated with dangerous environments "affects performance through its influence on the subject's breadth of attention...but we still do not know what mechanisms mediate the effect of arc usal" on attention span or even what is entailed in the adaptation to fear. Evidence suggests that problem~solving abilities are affected by stress in much the way Janis indicates that decision-making is impacted. In particular, "if much of problem-solving involves the manipulation in consciousness of alternatives, choices, probable and possible outcomes and consequences, and alternative goals," then stress interferes with efficient problem-solving. Few alternatives are actually considered and the thought process is guided more by habituation and stereotyping than by the conscious weighing of alternative strategies. What is needed, he argues, is "f~ne-gra~ned" analyses of these processes. It; t.?;lh The ',~ ; ~ . . . ~ . . _ --~wu~a~ ~ =11 W401 =~ - ~~ it has restricted experlmenb=1 work on these problems (candler 1982:101). A related shortcoming is the failure to consider the social context of problem-solving behavior. The balk of the research days with individual tasks, not collective or highly interdependent tasks. A Peso arch Agenda: System-Level Responses to Stress In the previous era when highly trained male pal ots were selected as astronauts on the basis of p ysical stem m a, high tolerance for stress, psychological stability and technical competence for space missions involving relatively short-term exposure to multiple stressors in dangerous environments, l ~= attention was paid to research on stress. In fact, Candler (1967) noted in his early sees of highly tra wed astronauts a lack of anticipated stress responses; these men had been "trained to have available response sequences, plans and problem-solving strategies for all imaginable emergencies" thus emergencies were transformed into llrcutine sip mbions't and therefore not experienced as stressful. At this stage in the space program harm was the primary focus of Bach selection and trainer. Even E pace capsule design divisions were not frequency made in order to runi~ze ernrir~rent~lly ironed stress or to impose Inhabitability" (Clearwater, 19851. me future holds form a different scenario. First, astronaut selection procure have changed to include Ron white ones and scientific personnel as well as pilcdcs. m ere ~ greater dived ity among potential astronauts in optional training, gender, age, ethnicity, and personality traits. Given this heterogeneity and the increased oa~lexi~y and duration of space station missions, emphasis most now be placed (as Helmreich, 1983; Foushee, 1984; and other social scientists have argued) on the selection and training of highly compatible crews especially as group size increases to eight or more in relatively small modules. In addition, only recently has habitability become an integrated aspect of the space station design process. Alterations in selection processes to maximize crew compatibility and
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345 decision-making contrasting computPr-mediated communication with face-to-face groups. However, Herr and Hiltz (1982:121-122) identify a wide range of other group and organizational level impacts, some of which correspond to Kiesler's concerns. the group-level hypothesized cognitive impacts include: (~) the creation of "on-1ine" groups or 'communities of int~rmSttt, (2) improved group decisions, and (3) an increase in "knowledge-based authority," etc. With respect to group decisions, the findings cited are mixed. On the positive side results suggest that the capabilities of data base searches, increased ads to information and access to decision-aides enhance group problem-solving and decision-making. As Turoff and Hiltz (1980:123) indicate "the cc mputer can aid in gathering subjective estimates within a group" and facilitate the resolution of disagreements. While Kerr end Hiltz (1982) indicate some empirical support for "at least the same qualify of solution" den ~arir~g cc~uter-mediated to face-t~face grumps (Turnoff, 1980; Hiltz et al. 1981~; Kiesler et al. (1984) and Siegel et al. (1986) report a decrement at least with rasped to time to solution for the ~uter-mediat~ grips. Others, Barr and Hiltz (1982) note, (SAC J6hans~ et al., 1979) argue that more conflict may result face the increased access to alternative vim and that a "false sense of Have consensus" mav arise (Barr arm Hiltz 1982:125). .,— — —a. . __ _ ~ ~ , On group prciblem-solving Burr arm Hiltz (1982:124) cite the work of Lipinski et al. (1980:158-159) which suggests that when considering, the "~k-focused c=~cations ~i~ by groups involved in joint prdblen solving, ~uter-bas~ Fornication systems are appropriate in the structuring, evaluating, and locating phases of problem solving, since time delays are acceptable, written rinses are appropriate, ark face-t~face contact is not essential." However, they go on to state thErt He "implementing, s~r~, and conceptualizing stages of problem solving are less amenable to this technology." More resort Is never concerning the phases of prdblern solving and the effects of cc~nputer mediation. The following list includes same of the hypothesized behavioral ilr pacts on grad identified by Burr ark Hiltz (1982:132-133). Many have not been sufficiently investigated to praise definitive evidence. (Adapted fan Burr and Hiltz:) 1. 2. 3. 4. Cauterized Fornication Uses cross~group c~nication. It incises lateral network linkages armors organizations. It incenses Bateau network Mirages within organizations. Catheterized Fornication may Charge social struck from pyramid or hierarchical to net~rk-shap~l. 5. It Ranges He c~tr~ity of fibers within grips. 6. 7. 8. It increases the possible Span of control. It can increase tile effective limits on the size of working grips. It Onuses the Persia of social networks, increasing connect~ness. 9. It increases Opportunities for decentralized c~nication. 10. Winterized Fornication may increase informal cc~nications. 11. It Farces who tows to Awn.
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346 12. Groups take longer to reach agreement and consensus is less likely. 13. Computerized communication scmetim£s mats it difficult to focus . . . c 1scusslons. 14. Regularity of indivi*u21 participation is sometimes difficult to enforce. 15. There is greater equality of participation than An conventional media. Communication Network Structure, Centrality and Power Prior research on communication networks In the social sciences provided evidence that the specific configuration or structure of the network affected the efficiency of problem solving groups. But more recent research tents to indicate that these results may not be valid for mandated communication systems. Subjects in various fcur-person network structures, given telephone contact capabilities, were able to come to consensus on group decision problems without much variation in degree of consensus or t;~ to achieve consensus across structures (see Frie~kin ark Cook, 1987). Results freon the co~put~r-mediated version of this e~per;,nent are not yet complete. Centrality has been Tire to ocher in various studio= of communication at in networks in which r~r~ other than information are unharmed (see Furman, 1979; Cook et al., 1983~. ~ c ~ puter-m ~ lath corns nication networks centralizer is lir ~ to ache ss to information an] control over the flow of information. To the extent that computer-mediation alters these parameters decentralization of power may I. Peso arch is needed which examines the relationship between the structure of the communication network an] control over information channels. Certainly as Kerr and Hiltz (1982:150) indicate "opportunities for decentralized communication are increased" in computer-mf~;ated networks, "becalm=- it is easier to keep all those concerned with issues informed and up to date." Thus the efficient flow of information is enhanced. But efficient decision-ma-ding in grc ups in which commune cation is computer-m£diated may require structured access to information rather than open access during the final stages of decision-making. Levels of access to information rather than the availability of communication channels becomes the critical determinant of positional centrality and thus power in this circumstance. Further research on these topics is needed. Communication Networks, Authority and Control Kerr and Hiltz (1982:125), among others, predict that computerized communication increases the "appreciation of knowledge- rather than hierarchical authority." If this result is general, it will be Important to study the conditions under which conflict can arise between knowledge-based and hierarchical authority structures. Efficient group functioning and problem solv m g is likely to be enhanced when there is minimal conflict between these sources of
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347 authority. Furthermore, hierarchical authority and command systems must be designed in such a way that information flow is not tightly hierar~hic,~ly stn~cb~. As noted above, in particular, in systems involving highly tra wed professionals the upward flow of critical information must not be circumvented by bureaucratic praceduras or restricted communication channels. Maximization of group productivity and problem solving efficiency is likely to occur under conditions of open access to communication channels rather than strict hierarchical access under conditions of complex tasks, high uncerta sty and a highly professionalized staff. ~ '~ - b~l~lC ~ on opts =~tive authority structures urKler varying animation network stricture are] task conditions is r~i~. With respect to authority anal control in systems using ~uter-mediated communication networks, two additional impacts city by Kay and Hiltz (1982:150-151) are relevant. May argue (p. 150) that "greater delegation of authority is possible winch the capacitor for account~hili~r and reprising decisions ~ a timely and orderly mariner." Secorx], they argue (p. 151) that it "in~ase5 the possible span of control" ark "allayers more centralized control oven geographically disper ~ units." Computerized d~
348 Existing relearn is focused on earth bash Fornication networks primarily a~r~g colleagues or remote xnb~s of interest gray where the exercise of authority is rarely an issue. Information expunge is frequently the primary or sole goal of the interaction. Thus e~crapolation foam the r ~ ts of s ~ ies on these networks must be treated as highly speculative. New research must be designed around the specific problems and parameters facing crews in space. Simulations could be designed which would mirror some of the most critical circumstances and used to evaluate alternative network structures, systemic of controlled versus c pen access to information, seven different tulles and levels of complex tasks. Problem solving Decency and group productivity woula He a primary focus of the Usury, although other issues sup as increase social c~runi~tion between crew melters an] ground personnel would also need to be addressed ~ terms of the impact on mission success, broadly defined. Priority should be place] on the development an] evaluation of on-~ne data collection systems for post-IOC space station missions and other long-~uration, 'reannex" missions concern mg the multiple impacts of computer-mediated communication systems. _ - . am_ e 8 _ ~ , 8 8, . Summary Statement Concerning Research Needs The 1986 Challenger disaster was as much a failure in organizational decision-m2Xing as a technical failure in the right rocket booster on ache shuttle. This fact atoms to the envy in organizational condoms for scientists and managers to focus attention primarily on the technological aspens of systems rancher then the social aspens of system design. Historically, ~ Me social scions=, as well as the physical sciences, productivity has been viewed furrily as a problem of ~hnim~1 system or organizational design and innovation. those Ho design and evaluate complex systems which rewire human pa~cicipation, hammerer, ~ st eventually recognize the significant role of psychological and social factors in productivity. Human factors are now incorporated in NASA's research program, but this is a recent and fairly ~m~11 beginn mg given the time frame within which research commitments are necessarily made. My recommendations assume that technical and social systems can not be designed in isolation of one another arm that interdisciplinary research High cusses the invisible bouncy between the physical and social sciences is rewired. `=ignir~ apace stations which are maximally habitable and which optimize human comfort, satisfaction and pa ~ ctivity and m ~ Size the sense of isolation ark ache stresses associated with risk and uncerta sty, as well as the potential for ~ntra-grcup and ~nter-group conflict is as critical a goal as the flawless design of structures which will provide the technical support for "life aloft". Research on many critical ~ of social system design is simolv - ~- In Dart this is because the technologies under , _ _ _ , ~ , _ ~ ~ __ _ Be, _~ nck available. _ , ~ -_ _ ~ _ consideration are new (e.g. computer-m£diated networks to facilitate interpersonal ccmmunication are relatively recent); but also in part,
349 this state of the art is a function of national priorities arm budgetary constraints. Hopefully, this situation will change. The quality of life in space in the t~r~ty-first century will hinge upon decisions we may during this decade as to wit reseat is necessary to T~mize not only productivity, the bott~n line for many, but also less tangible qualities such as habitability, sociability and livability. The space station is, after all, a place to be inhabited, a mini-society which at some not too distant time in the future must begin to cope with not only the technologist requirements of its environment, but also the psychological and social newt of its i ~ itants and the social constraints and requirements of an emerging s ~ icily. Recruitment, selection, training, sustenance an] replacement of persons will be as critical as the maintenance and replacement of Pal. The following is an Abbreviated list of research newt (see Table 1) which I have suggested in the text of this report related to social factors involved An space station design during the post-IOC phase. The emphasis in this report has been placed on issues related to stress, its causes and consequence=, and the impacts of c~uter-m~iated c~nication systems (since that is currently the primary Modality envisioned. ) I heave only scratched the surface. In conclusion, it is important to note that as with many of the r~ear~hpr~r~; of NINA ar~Un~versi=-based scientists, the benefits to be derived freon the pry research extend far beyond the limits . . · . . . - purposes of future spa ~ station missions. Improved methods for coping with multiple stressors in hostile environments and a better understanding of the social and psychological effects of computer-m-~;ated communication systems have great potential applicability in a wide range of human social contexts. m e payoffs for society as we know it on earth are potentially even greater than the payoffs for life as we envision it on space stations in the next century.
350 ABLE 1 Self Research New: Social Factors ~ ivity I~-l~ration Space Station Missions Social stress, Eon Activity am Group E~tionir~: (1) Develop more oc~z~sive arm praise neasu~ of stress levels for situations i~lvir~ multiple stressorse (2) Pesear~ arm develop stress Ditorir~ A, on-lir~ data acll~ion pros, arxt more Abusive measures of stress. (3) At r~ ~ ;~rsanal characteristics= (~.g. personality divisions, Gerber, e=.) awl -Pacific responses to str~;s and adaptations to stress on lo duration Span station m, cci=S. (7) (4) Amine gr=2p composition factors Rich maximize efficient group functioning ~ multiple stressors. (5) Prearm ~ Pacific i—acts of t ins of multiple str~sors ~ irxtivi~1 arm grow deci_icn-0ci~ pa. Assess the effectiveness of different ocp~ strategies arxt decision aides urger v~yir~ levels of stress arm c~inatia~ of stepsons. (6) E~1 r~ an He camps of stress to in`:lu~ as well as Ecological arx! p~siol~ical faiths social factors such as gram size, gram cc~ositian, division of 1~, workload, Empties of equity in the ~ccignme~ of tasks arm ~;ibilities, styles of leadership, type arm Dane of Stack with significant others, etc. on lam - uratian missions. Begin to develop process wars which relate stress to i*xtivi~ performance and griever h~tionir~ arm specify the asr~itims Sexier whim the ~ of ir~ivi~1 ~rforma~e seriously Apses= group Tinier. iated ~icati~ As, Eon ~ctivit,, arm Alp tianir~: (1) ~ em research cn me social Pacts of a~t~iated = cation gist—E; on irxtivi~al decisi~-naki~ and group pmblem solvers. (2) Investigate the effects of cxn~r~iatioa~ in relation to Of phases of group problem solvers, oapplexity of the tasks am variations in the levels of envi~ta1 stress am A. (3) C~ct demean can canp~ter~;~ted Fornication Stems am ~ distribution of poser arm authority. lr~restigate in particular the potential for conflict between knthrledge~ and hieratical authority structure and Off link between centrality arm the exen:ise of pager arm influence. (4) Tr~restigate the E=ter~tial a= of Alter radiated canmu~cation between crew Airs am significant athers ~ earth atter~ir~ to issues of privacy, social support arm the effects on responses to isolation, nfi~rit arm ~ r stressors on apace station missions. In the future, research the differential impacts on individual performance and group functioning of various types of mediated ~`u.uDnication systems (including audio and video channels). (6) Examine factors related to communication Orbits and aortas to cereal mcation channels which inhibit the upward flow of critical information (especially negative information) and mechanisms which circumvent this E,~1em. (7) Consider the effects of computer-mediated communication on the relations between crew members and ground personnel and between crews of different modules With respect to the potential for intergroup conflict and develop mechanisms to mitigate conflict.
351 F~RENGF~ Baddeley, A. D. 1972 Selective attention and performance ~ dangerous environments. British Journal of Psychology 63:537-546. Belle, D. 1982 m e stress of caring: women as providers of social support. Pp. 496-505 in L. Goldberger and S. Breznitz, ens., Handbook of Stress: Theoretical and C1 mimal Aspects. New York: The Free Press. Biersner, R. J., and Hogan, R. 1984 Personality correlates of adjustment in isolated work groups. Journal of Research in Personality 18:491-496. Breznitz, S., and Goldberger, L. 1982 Stress research at a crossroads. Pp. 3-6 On L. Goldberger and S. Brezn~tz, eds., Handbook of Stress: Theoretical and Cl~nir=1 Aspects. New York: The Free Press. Broadbent, D. E. 1971 Decision and Stress. CaplanJ G. J and Killilea M., -do. 1976 Support Systems and Putual Help: Explorations. New York: Grune and Stratton. New York: Academic. Multidisciplinary Champness, B. G. 1971 Bargaining at Bell Laboratories. Paper E/71270/CH, Communication Sues Group, London, England. Clearwat~r, Y. 1985 A human place ~ cuter space. 34-43. Psychology Today. July, Cook, K. S., Emerson, R. M., Gillmore, M. R., and Yamagishi, T. 1983 The distribution of power in exchange networks: theory and ~ ~ American Journal of Sociology expert 1 results. 89:275-305. Cooper, C. L., ed. 1983 Stress Research: Issues for the Eighties. Chicest~r: John Wiley & Sons.
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353 F~i~ki=, N., and Cook, K. S. 1987 fornication Network Stances and Social Influence Excess== In Small ~oblen-Solving Groups. To be presented at the annual meetir~s of the American Sociological Association, Chicago, August, 1987. Glass, D. C. 1977 Behavior Patterns, Stress end Coronary Disease. Hillsdale: Erlbaum Hel~eic h, R. L. 1983 Applying psychology ~ outer Apace: w fulfilled promises revisited. Pp. 445-450 On American Psychologist. April. Helmreich, R. L., Wilhelm, J. A., and Range, T. E. 1980 Psychological considerations ~ future space missions. Pp. 1-23 in T. S. Cheston and D. L. Winters, eds., Human Factors of Out ~ Space Production. Boulder' Colorado: Wes~view Press. Hiltz, S. R., Johnson, R., and Turoff, M. 981 The quality of group decision-making in face-to-face versus computerized conferences. Presented at the annual meetings of the American Sociological Association, Toronto, Canada. Holmes, T. H., and Rahe, R. H. 1967 m e social readjustment rating scale. Journal of Psychosomatic Research 11:213-218. Holroyd, K. A. and Lazarus, R. S. 1982 Stress, Coping, and Somatic Adaptation. Pp. 21-35 ~ - L. Goldberger and S. Breznitz, eds., Handbook of Stress: Theoretical and Cl Apical Aspects. New York: The Free Press. Janis, I. L. 1972 Victims of Groupthink. New York: E arc curt, Brace. 1982 Decisionmaking under stress. Pp. 69-87 ~ L. Goldberger and S. Brezn~tz, ens., Handbook of Stress: Theoretical and Clinical Aspects. New York: m e Free Press. Janis, I. L., Defares, P. B., and Grossman, P. 1982 Hypervigilant reactions to threat. In H. Selye, ea., Selye's Guide to Stress Research. Vol. 3. New York: Van Nostrand. Johansen, R., Vallee J., and Spangler, K. 1979 Electronic Maatings: Technological Alternatives and Social Choices. Addison-Wesley: Reading, Mess.
3S4 Kerr, E. B., and Hiltz, S. R. 1982 Pp. 114-151 ~ ~ter-Miadiated Cation Systems: Sta—~-= and Evaluation. New York: Academic Ens. Kessler, R. C. ~ ark Mood, J. D. 1984 Sex differences in vulnerability to undesirable life events. American Sociologic Reviser 49: 620-631. Kessler, R. C., ark florae Jr., J. A. 1981 Trots in the relationship between sex and pi hological distress: 1957-1976. American Sociological Reviser 46: 443-452 . Kiesler, S., Siegel J., and M~Guire, T. W. 1984 Social psychological aspects of ccmput~r-mediated communication. American Psychologist 39:1123-1134. Levme, S., and Scotch N. A., eds. 1970 Social Stress. Chicago: Aldine Publishing Co. Lipinski, H., Spang S., and Tydeman, J. 1980 Supporting task-focused communication. Pp. 158-160 in A. R. Benenfeld and E. J. KazlausXas, ens., Communication Information: Proceedings of the 43rd ASIS Annual Meeting. Knowledge Industry Publication: White Plains, New York. Meddler, G. 1967 Invited commentary. In M. H. Appley and R. Trumbull, eds., Psychological Stress: Issues In Research. New York: Appleton Century Crofts, 1982 Stress and thought processes. Pp. 88-104 in L. Goldberger and S. Erezn~tz, eds., Handbook of Stress: m eoreti~1 and Clinical ~ s. New York: m e Free Press. Pearl m, L. 1982 The social context of stress. Pp. 367-379 in L. Goldberger and S. Brezn~tz, eds., Handbook of Stress: Theoretical and Clinical Aspects. New York: me Free Press. Selye, H. 1936 A syn~rc=e produced by diverse nocuous agents. Nature 138:32. 1956 The Stress of Life. New York: M~Graw-Hill. 1974 Stress Without Distress. Philadelphia: Lipp~ncott. Siegel, J., Dubr~vsky, V., Kiesler, S., and Require, T. W. 1986 Group processes in computer-meSiated communication. Organizational Behavior and Human Performance 37:157-187.
355 Simes, D. K., and Sirsky, P. A. 1985 Human factors: an exploration of the psychology of human-cc mputer dialogues. On H. R. Hartson, ea., Advances Human-Computer Interaction 1:49-103. Norwood, N.J.: Ablex Publishing Corp. Thoits, P. A. 1981 Undesirable life events and psychophysiological distress: a problem of operational confounding. Review 46:97-109. American Sociological Turoff, M. 1980 Management Issues in Human Communication Via Computer. Presented at the Stanford Conference on Office Automation. Stanford, California. Turoff, M., and Hiltz, S. R. 1980 Structuring ~x~munications for the Office of the Future. Presented at the National Computer Office Automation Conference, Atlanta, Georgia. Valice, J., Jchansen, R., Iipinski, H., Spangler, K., and Wilson, T. 1978 Group Communication Through Computers 4:Rep. R-40. Institute for the Future, Halo Park, California.
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