liu.seSearch for publications in DiVA
Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Framing risks in a safety-critical and hazardous job: Risk-taking as responsibility in railway maintenance
Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Technology and Social Change.
2008 (English)In: Journal of Risk Research, ISSN 1366-9877, Vol. 11, no 5, 645-658 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In risk management research, risk-taking is mostly treated as deviation that calls for improved risk communication. I argue, however, that risk-taking should be seen as expressing a rationale of its own, thus, improving safety requires that this rationale be adequately understood and that the conditions that reproduce risk-taking be changed. This argument is supported by an ethnography of railway maintenance in Sweden. Railway technicians are charged with maintaining the railway infrastructure to support safe and punctual trains, an assignment that exposes them to occupational hazards. The technicians' claim of occupational responsibility for transportation safety risks is framed by two notions in occupational discourse: first, the safety-critical nature of their tasks, and second, the notion of service to the general public. Technician interdependence in achieving occupational safety requires mutual responsibility in the team. Technicians justify occupational risk-taking, claiming it is sometimes needed to achieve production goals given the available time and resources and the manageability of the risks taken. Finally, I stress the need for technicians to change their frames of reference and for employers to assume responsibility for reducing the need for risk-taking. © 2008 Taylor & Francis.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 11, no 5, 645-658 p.
Keyword [en]
framing risks, occupational responsibility, risk-taking, railway maintenance
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-43148DOI: 10.1080/13669870701715550Local ID: 72083OAI: diva2:264006
Available from: 2009-10-10 Created: 2009-10-10 Last updated: 2011-01-10

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full text

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Sanne, Johan M
By organisation
Faculty of Arts and SciencesTechnology and Social Change
In the same journal
Journal of Risk Research
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 61 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link