Improving Air Safety Through Organizational Learning: Consequences of a Technology-led Model

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Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., Jan 1, 2007 - Transportation - 180 pages
The key theme of this book is organizational learning and its consequences for the field of aviation safety. Air safety rates have been improving for a long time, demonstrating the effects of a good learning model at work. However, the pace of improvement has almost come to a standstill. Why is this? Many safety improvements have been embodied in technology. New devices and procedures appear almost daily, yet the rate of air safety improvement has dragged in recent years. Improving Air Safety through Organizational Learning explains this situation as being the consequence of a development model supported chiefly by information technology being introduced as an alternative to human operators. This is not a book about the convenience of including or not including IT in aviation, but an open discussion about the adequacy and risks of some practices in the field. Two different but complementary issues emerge. Firstly, a real improvement in air safety requires a different approach, since the present one seems now to be exhausted. Secondly, the current approach has powerful economic roots, and any new approach must deal with this fact, improving safety rates without becoming financially damaging. Consequently the book is divided into two parts. Part one deals with the issue of the present learning model organizing the conclusions around accident reports that show themselves the existence of a problem: the present use of technology makes the system better at doing things already known, while at the same time it makes the whole system worse at dealing with unplanned situations. Part two suggests a new development model, one that makes strong use of technology but at the same time questions every step: what knowledge will disappear from the system and what is the potential effect of that loss?

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Poco puede decir en la reseña de un libro su propio autor.
Sirva esto más que como una reseña como un sitio abierto a la discusión y me permitiré añadir algo:
Este libro nació como una tesis doctoral donde pretendía extrapolar el modelo de aprendizaje que permitía avanzar en seguridad aérea -no en vano, soy desde hace mucho aficionado a la aviación- a la gestión empresarial.
No encontré la acogida que esperaba en el ámbito empresarial sino precisamente en el de la aviación. En consecuencia, no les interesó en absoluto la parte relativa a la extrapolación del modelo y, en su lugar, prefirieron que me centrase en el modelo de mejora continua de la seguridad aérea.
¿Por qué está en inglés? Sencillo; porque a las editoriales españolas con las que hablé no les interesó la publicación. Se da, por tanto, la paradoja de poder comprarlo en Amazon pero no en una librería española.


Commercial Aviation A HighRisk Activity
Air safety as a model of successful learning
Limitations to success in organizational learning
Reductions in the rate of improvements in safety levels
The reduction in the rate of learning as consequence of a model
Event Analysis as an Improvement Tool
Life cycle of information on events
Limitations of eventbased learning
Adjustment of the different organizational paradigms to the needs of learning in air safety
Organizational Learning in Air Safety Lessons for the Future
Change of organizational paradigm
Meaning and Trust as Keys to Organizational Learning
Role of trust in organizational learning
The Future of Improvements in Air Safety
Determinant factors of learning ability
Alternative learning model

Safety in Commercial Aviation Risk Factors
Classification of risk factors
Analysis of risk factors
Summary of the treatment of risk factors
Explanation of the Reduction in the Rate of Learning in Complex Environments
Barriers to organizational learning
Organizational paradigms and their role in learning
Paradigms and modes of action
Changes in the relationships between variables within the system
Future lines of development
Final conclusions

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About the author (2007)

Jose Sanchez-Alarcos Ballesteros teaches at the Instituto de Empresa.

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