Australian Information Warfare and Security Conference

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


School of Computer and Information Science, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Western Australia


7th Australian Information Warfare and Security Conference, Edith Cowan University, Perth Western Australia, 4th - 5th December, 2006.


The security industry comprises of diverse and multidisciplined practitioners, originating from many disciplines. It has been suggested that the industry has an undefined knowledge structure, although security experts contain a rich knowledge structure. There has also been limited research mapping security expert knowledge structure, reducing the ability of tertiary educators to provide industry focused teaching and learning. The study utilized multidimensional scaling (MDS) and expert interviews to map the consensual knowledge structure of security experts in their understanding of security risk. Security risk concepts were extracted and critiqued from West Australian university courses. Linguistic analysis categorised the more utilized security risk concepts. MDS tested these concepts and presented a spatial knowledge structure [STRESS1=0.35, a=0.64], further tested and validated by security experts [N=3]. The study presented a number of significant findings. A table of security categories, with supporting subordinate concepts was presented. The security risk consensual knowledge map suggested that the concept threat occupied a central theme for security experts. Spatial location of security risk concepts provided an indication of conceptual relationships. Finally, the sequential structure and concept clusters provided an indication of security expert conceptual decision making.