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Fruhen L.S.,University of Aberdeen | Mearns K.J.,University of Aberdeen | Flin R.H.,University of Aberdeen | Kirwan B.,EUROCONTROL
Safety Science | Year: 2013

Senior managers can influence safety culture and it is therefore important to understand how they think about this aspect of their organisation. Examining senior managers' interpretations of safety culture (via content and artefacts like language), is one way to address this issue. Safety culture descriptions obtained through interviews with senior managers (N=8) from two air traffic management organisations in Europe were subjected to content analysis based on Reason's (1997) safety culture model and linguistic analysis (using Leximancer). The content analysis indicated 'just culture' as a dominant theme in senior managers' thinking about safety culture. Close links between the linguistic themes 'people' and 'safety' were found in both organisations. Senior managers from Organisation 1 viewed 'management' as crucial for safety culture and the linguistic analysis suggested flatter hierarchies and communication might facilitate their approach. Organisation 2 was characterised by a focus on 'reporting culture', 'performance', 'data' and 'accountability'. The findings of the two complementary methods of analysis illustrated how the conscious, as well as the subconscious, levels of understanding safety culture might be related. Organisations may benefit from an investigation of their leaders' safety culture views through linguistic analysis, in addition to questionnaires and other measures. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Ali A.H.,Lancaster University | Markarian G.,Lancaster University | Tarter A.,Ultra Electronics | Kolle R.,EUROCONTROL
Journal of Aircraft | Year: 2010

The current trend in high-accuracy aircraft navigation systems is toward using data from one or more inertial navigation subsystems and one or more navigational reference subsystems. Anenhancement in fault diagnosis and detection is thus achieved via computing the minimum mean square estimate of the aircraft states using, for instance, the Kalman filter method. However, this enhancement might degrade if the cause of a subsystem fault is common to other subsystems providing seemingly independently derived data. One instance of such a case is the tragic incident of Air France Flight 447 in June 2009, where aircraft communication addressing and reporting system message transmissions in the last moments before the crash indicated inconsistencies in measured airspeed. In this research, the authors propose the use of a mathematical aircraft model to work out the current states of an airplane and, in turn, use these states to validate the readings of the navigation equipment through the use of a diagnostic decision tree network. Various simulated equipment failures were introduced in a controlled environment to validate the concept of operation. The results show successful detection and identification of failing equipment in all scenarios run. Copyright © 2010.

Fruhen L.S.,University of Aberdeen | Mearns K.J.,University of Aberdeen | Mearns K.J.,UK Health and Safety Executive | Flin R.,University of Aberdeen | Kirwan B.,EUROCONTROL
Safety Science | Year: 2014

Senior managers' safety commitment is emphasised in the safety literature as a crucial influence on organisational safety. Yet there is little understanding of the characteristics that underpin their ability to engage in behaviours that demonstrate safety commitment. This study investigates the contribution of problem-solving, social competence and safety knowledge to such behaviours. Senior managers (N= 60) from European and North American air traffic management organisations participated in interviews consisting of open questions designed to trigger safety knowledge and descriptions of behaviours that demonstrate safety commitment as well as scenarios designed to trigger problem-solving and social competence. Reliable scores were generated through systematic scoring procedures involving two independent coders. The results indicated that problem-solving, namely the number of issues and information sources considered when understanding problems and generating ideas to solve a problem were positively related to demonstrations of safety commitment. The ability to perceive others was also found to correlate with safety commitment, whereas safety knowledge was not associated with behaviours that demonstrate safety commitment. It is proposed that training and guidance designed for senior managers should focus on their problem-solving abilities and perception of others in order to support them in demonstrating safety commitment. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

James Chang Y.,U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission | Bley D.,WreathWood Group | Criscione L.,U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission | Kirwan B.,EUROCONTROL | And 4 more authors.
Reliability Engineering and System Safety | Year: 2014

Lack of appropriate and sufficient human performance data has been identified as a key factor affecting human reliability analysis (HRA) quality especially in the estimation of human error probability (HEP). The Scenario Authoring, Characterization, and Debriefing Application (SACADA) database was developed by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to address this data need. An agreement between NRC and the South Texas Project Nuclear Operating Company (STPNOC) was established to support the SACADA development with aims to make the SACADA tool suitable for implementation in the nuclear power plants' operator training program to collect operator performance information. The collected data would support the STPNOC's operator training program and be shared with the NRC for improving HRA quality. This paper discusses the SACADA data taxonomy, the theoretical foundation, the prospective data to be generated from the SACADA raw data to inform human reliability and human performance, and the considerations on the use of simulator data for HRA. Each SACADA data point consists of two information segments: context and performance results. Context is a characterization of the performance challenges to task success. The performance results are the results of performing the task. The data taxonomy uses a macrocognitive functions model for the framework. At a high level, information is classified according to the macrocognitive functions of detecting the plant abnormality, understanding the abnormality, deciding the response plan, executing the response plan, and team related aspects (i.e., communication, teamwork, and supervision). The data are expected to be useful for analyzing the relations between context, error modes and error causes in human performance.

Koelle R.,EUROCONTROL | Strijland W.,42 Solutions
Integrated Communications, Navigation and Surveillance Conference, ICNS | Year: 2013

This paper considers the design and implementation challenges of a software tool to support semantic-driven extraction, harmonization, and application of rules for system engineering and security assurance in air navigation. Large-scale system engineering like SESAR and NextGen require a consistent and resource-efficient approach to building in security throughout the early stages of the system development life-cycle. At the time being there is no consistent corpus of regulatory / legislative rules and requirements, process-oriented and technology-specific standards or best practices for air traffic management security. Softwaremediated support to security system engineering offers a resource-efficient instrument to overcome the challenges of a patchy and advance the current framework. For the software tool concept and design requirements discussed in this paper, we devised a user-mediated and iterative development process. The principal steps are presented based on an analysis of related research and initial findings of the feasibility stage of the software tool development. The approach revolves around the development of a domain-dependent set of data dictionaries and an associated ontology that can be used to verify and validate syntactically and ontologically valid combinations of terms, rules, and relationships on a harmonized rule base. This research-in-progress paper presents the initial findings from the feasibility stage of the software tool development, in particular the data dictionary. Feedback from a demonstration exercise with security experts suggests that the tool addresses the current security engineering support needs and offers an iterative capability to complement the associated guidance material in SESAR. © 2013 IEEE.

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