Risk and Safety as a Wicked Problem

Introduction It is nearly ten years since the outstanding research by Wagner and Associates ‘Safety - A Wicked Problem’ was published (http://www.peterwagner.com.au/wp-content/uploads/Safety-A-Wicked-Problem2.pdf). The project examined responses by prominent CEOs to common problems associated in tackling risk and safety at work. The recommendations in the Executive Summary alone provide critical directions should anyone in the safety …

Ten Secrets to Risk and Safety Motivation and Ownership

Ten Secrets to Risk and Safety Motivation and Ownership (republished by request) Here they are: 1. There are no secrets. What we need to know about motivation is already out there, trouble is, in the risk and safety sector, education in the social sciences is minimal. The best place to start is by unlearning that …

Risk Homeostasis Theory–Why Safety Initiatives Go Wrong

My favourite quote is in relation to racing drivers on normal roads and why they have more crashes and get more fines: “At their level of skill, driving like an average driver may be intolerably boring. Imagine being a master of Beethoven and all you are allowed to play is “Twinkle, twinkle, little star”! (Wilde, …

Incommensurability and Discourse in Risk

Incommensurability and Discourse in Risk One of the most important concepts discussed by Feyerbend, Laktos, MacIntyre and Kuhn is that of incommensurability. Incommensurability refers to incongruence and misunderstanding between linguistic structures. What this means is that disciplines are limited in what can be understood outside of their own discipline. One’s language limits one’s understanding and …

Where is Safety Leadership Headed?

The Pain of Reporting…article by Paul Nieuwoudt (first published here: http://leadership-observer.com/index.php/blog/where-is-safety-leadership-headed) – raises some interesting questions about our current approach to our safety management and incident reporting systems. More of Paul’s articles: Imperfections and Humble Enquiry – A Great Team Zero Harm and A Peasant in 16th Century Europe Another side to the story The …