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Everybody's Business?: A Qualitative Assessment of Safety Culture at SSAB EMEA
Linköping University, Department of Computer and Information Science. Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2012 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Many modern-day industries share features of tight coupling and high complexity, making it difficult to describe incidents in terms of direct attribution. This situation has been answered by novel theories on the bonds between people and their environment. Cognitive Systems Engineering (CSE) offers a new way of analysing human activities, acknowledging the impact of complex interaction and unpredictability. Doing so allows for innovative ways of pursuing work safety. In this study, the concept of safety culture has been interpreted from a CSE perspective and applied in a qualitative assessment of current safety work of at SSAB EMEA. A total number of 26 SSAB employees were interviewed, probing attitudes, perceptions and safety system structures at the Oxelösund steel mill, rolling mill and upper organizational layers. Additional data was collected using informers, SSAB documentation and participatory observation. Data was processed using a combination of top-down and bottom-up analytical approaches, creating a qualitative assessment of safety culture from salient themes. Results reveal an advanced state of safety management. However, management’s intentions are inhibited by issues in management presence and communication, management training, worker influence, forms and content of operator training, reporting, feedback, flow of communication and safety-related core assumptions. Revisiting lessons learned within the field of CSE, suggestions are made to possible areas of improvement and future research. These suggestions concern employee involvement in safety work, work identities, forms of training, manager roles and communication.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 138 p.
Keyword [en]
safety culture, human factors, cognitive science, cognitive systems engineering, joint cognitive systems, steel industry, industrial safety
National Category
Work Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-75429ISRN: LIU-IDA/KOGVET-A--12/004--SEOAI: diva2:506686
External cooperation
Subject / course
Cognitive science programme
Available from: 2012-02-29 Created: 2012-02-29 Last updated: 2012-02-29Bibliographically approved

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