Halloween is not an Australian thing indeed, as a child in the 1960s and 1970s there was simply no interest in Halloween in Australia. However, with growing syncretism between US and Australian cultures since the Vietnam War the festival and commercialism of Halloween has been growing Down Under. A … [Read more...] about What Can Halloween tell us About Safety?
Coronavirus and the Dunny Paper Effect
The recent run on toilet paper by Australians in fear and panic of the coronavirus serves as a wonderful semiotic for understanding human decision making. We could call this the ‘Dunny paper Effect’. You can see here shoppers rushing for toilet paper stocks in Woolworths: … [Read more...] about Coronavirus and the Dunny Paper Effect
The Poetics of Risk
The idea of poetics stems back to Aristotle and denotes (https://www.iep.utm.edu/aris-poe/) experiences and non-technique (Ellul) focused modes of knowing and thinking (namely STEM). Poetry is one form of poetics but any form of non-technical expression and experience defines what it is to be … [Read more...] about The Poetics of Risk
Quantifying the Unquantifiable
In every workshop I conduct the issue of measures, a STEM view of evidence and ‘controls’ are always raised. This week was no exception. I find it so amusing that the industry has this fixation with measures in working life and the opposite in our private life. Yet: The most important things in … [Read more...] about Quantifying the Unquantifiable
So, You Want Culture Change
Grappling with culture is one of the issues Safety does poorly. After all, the industry and its STEM gestalt are not well equipped to even define culture well. This is most evident in the OHS Body of Knowledge (https://www.ohsbok.org.au/). Once again, unless the industry is prepared to step outside … [Read more...] about So, You Want Culture Change
What Does SPoR Do?
The Social Psychology of Risk (SPoR) is not just a theory about how people make decisions and enact those decisions. SPoR is a way of thinking about work and how all work is social and psychological. SPoR is a very practical way of understanding why people do what they do and helps leaders and … [Read more...] about What Does SPoR Do?
A Poetic Worldview
Someone asked me the other day what was the opposite of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). An interesting question because it begs a binary answer. One might think the opposite of STEM is the Arts and Humanities but I don’t think that really captures the difference enough. When ones … [Read more...] about A Poetic Worldview
When Things Go Wrong Let’s Do More of the Same
I always find it fascinating when there is an increase in safety statistics or incidents that the call is always about greater vigilance, more checklists, more policing and more effort. What an amazing industry that still doesn’t know why things go wrong. Rather than question the … [Read more...] about When Things Go Wrong Let’s Do More of the Same