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Known and unknown requirements in healthcare

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Laura Brown, Dr Christopher BullORCiD, Jonathan Keane



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


We report experience in requirements elicitation of domain knowledge from experts in clinical and cognitive neurosciences. The elicitation target was a causal model for early signs of dementia indicated by changes in user behaviour and errors apparent in logs of computer activity. A Delphi-style process consisting of workshops with experts followed by a questionnaire was adopted. The paper describes how the elicitation process had to be adapted to deal with problems encountered in terminology and limited consensus among the experts. In spite of the difficulties encountered, a partial causal model of user behavioural pathologies and errors was elicited. This informed requirements for configuring data- and text-mining tools to search for the specific data patterns. Lessons learned for elicitation from experts are presented, and the implications for requirements are discussed as “unknown unknowns”, as well as configuration requirements for directing data-/text-mining tools towards refining awareness requirements in healthcare applications.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Sutcliffe A, Sawyer P, Stringer G, Couth S, Brown LJE, Gledson A, Bull C, Rayson P, Keane J, Zeng X, Leroi I

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Requirements Engineering

Year: 2020

Volume: 25

Pages: 1-20

Print publication date: 01/03/2020

Online publication date: 30/07/2018

Acceptance date: 30/06/2018

Date deposited: 07/10/2022

ISSN (print): 0947-3602

ISSN (electronic): 1432-010X

Publisher: Springer UK


DOI: 10.1007/s00766-018-0301-6


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