Common Ground and Coordination in Joint Activity
Published on : April 14, 2012
Generalizing the concepts of joint activity developed by Clark (1996), we describe key aspects of team coordination. Joint activity depends on interpredictability of the participants’ attitudes and actions. Such interpredictability is based on common ground—pertinent knowledge, beliefs and assumptions that are shared among the involved parties. Joint activity assumes a basic compact, which is an agreement (often tacit) to facilitate coordination and prevent its breakdown. One aspect of the Basic Compact is the commitment to some degree of aligning multiple goals. A second aspect is that all parties are expected to bear their portion of the responsibility to establish and sustain common ground and to repair it as needed.