Safety in Design as if Humans Matter
I always find it interesting when the discipline of objects attends to something. It’s how we get ‘human factors’ that is about systems, ‘resilience engineering’ that is not about human resilience and Behavior-Based Safety that is not about behaviours or safety but brutalism. Then we get zero harm that is not about preventing harm but metrics, PR campaigns like ‘dumb ways to die’ and ‘Pickled’ that are all about blaming people for being ‘dumb’ (https://safetyrisk.net/the-medium-is-the-message/) and ‘speak up’ campaigns that drive suppression of conversations and under-reporting.
So, when it comes to safety-in-design is it really about how people think and make decisions around objects, nup. I can’t find any research in the safety in design genre that includes the Social Psychology of Risk or any discussion on what influences and motivates human decision making around objects. The discipline of objects still focused on objects. Guess what, more engineering, more causal attribution and still no discussion of how human decision making is influenced by a host of non-materialist, unconscious and social influences. Still about hazards and controls. Here are some examples:
So, if you are interested in what influences affect people in contexts maybe start with understanding social influences see Figure 1. Mapping Social Influence Strategies.
Figure 1. Mapping Social Influence Strategies.