Sharing ideas on Risk, Human Performance, Teams and Leaders

Sidney Dekker

Just culture after serious incident

Professor Sidney Dekker is Professor of Human factors and System Safety at Lund University, Sweden and Director of Research at the Leonardo Da Vinci Center for Complexity and Systems Thinking. He has worked in the USA, Australia, New Zealand, the Netherlands and England and been a Senior Fellow at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore as well as Visiting Academic in the Department of Epidemiology and Preventative Medicine Monash University in Melbourne. He is also Professor of Community Health Science at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Manitoba, in Canada. His recent books include "Ten Questions about Human Error: A New view of Human Factors and System Safety" (2005) "The Field Guide to Understanding Human Error" (2006) and "Just Culture, Balancing Safety and Accountability" (2007) The OSU Foundation in the United States awards a yearly Sidney Dekker Critical thinking Award.

We need to be cautious with our interpretation of heroes, in that we don't imply that those who don't recover from serious incidents are bad people. In this context we need to have a balanced perspective on what is a just culture. We need to appreciate the complexity of our systems and try see things through the eyes of those involved. A safety culture is one that allows and encourage the reporting of bad news without fear of re-crimination.