An exploratory study on manifesting decision-inertia in a 360-degree extended reality terrorist incident

Brandon Lee May*, Rebecca Milne, Gary Dalton, Amy Meenaghan, Andie Shawyer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Emergency response decision making is crucial in managing critical incidents; however, several studies have demonstrated the negative effects of decision inertia. Understanding the manifestation and impact of decision inertia, as well as utilising extended reality (XR) technology with 360-degree immersion, should enhance decision making in high-stress environments and improve emergency response efforts. This study investigated decision inertia, using 109 participants, in an XR 360-degree environment and its impact on decision-making outcomes. The findings revealed that participants often opted for a sub-optimal outcome, and decision inertia scores varied across these outcomes. Linear regression analysis demonstrated that decision inertia scores significantly predicted decision outcomes, with higher decision inertia scores associated with sub-optimal decision-making. Participants prior moral decision-making did influence subsequent immersive reality decision outcomes and demonstrated a Bayesian updating effect. The Structured Tabular Thematic Analysis highlighted the importance of information validity, decision confidence, and scenario fidelity in decision-making within the immersive environment. The study provides insights into decision inertia in immersive virtual reality critical incidents and offers practical solutions for improving decision-making processes in emergency response contexts.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCognition, Technology, Work
Publication statusAccepted for publication - 29 Mar 2024

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