The impact of safety culture on systemic risk management

Neil Gunningham, Darren Sinclair

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Notwithstanding impressive gains in occupational safety across the Australian coal mining sector, this research reveals that even within the same company, some mines substantially outperform others in terms of safety outcomes, raising questions as to why, notwithstanding the introduction of sophisticated and systemic risk management mandated by government, such variation still exists. Potential contributory variables are considered (technology, physical environment, management systems), and discarded, before examining the role of safety culture. Drawing on qualitative (interviews) and quantitative research (safety statistics and audit results) it was found that distinctive patterns of site and context specific cultural factors align to safety performance. The article provides insights as to whether, to what extent or in what circumstances site specific cultural variables, served to undermine or reinforce the effectiveness of the company's overall risk management strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)505-516
Number of pages12
JournalEuropean Journal of Risk Regulation
Volume5
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes

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