Safe and future-proof

Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference articleScientific

Abstract

Societies today are profoundly affected by sweeping megatrends, such as globalisation, digitalization, aging, climate change and resource scarcity, that challenge current organizations in different ways. Work is increasingly carried out in virtual organizational networks and a growing number of companies perform their activities in multicultural environments due to the globalisation and increasing interdependence. Demographic changes, such as aging create challenges regarding knowledge transfer and sustaining skilled labour. Resource scarcity may challenge the production processes, while climate change may have a variety of impacts by creating exceptional weather conditions, which may cause major events with large-scale implications. Navigating these megatrends and dealing with the ever-changing operational environment is a must for ensuring organizational survival and success. In safety-critical organizations, such as nuclear, mining, aviation and healthcare, it is especially important to detect and interpret weak signals on changes and to react properly, since failure to do so may have significant safety consequences for people and the environment. This study aims at exploring how to future-proof and enhance safety in safety-critical organizations in a dynamic context marked by a variety of megatrends. This conceptual work draws on cultural studies, safety science, organizational science and foresight research to propose an alignment of a safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. A good safety culture can be seen as the organizational potential for safety; the ability and willingness to succeed in varying conditions and to understand and act upon the risks on a daily basis (Reiman and Oedewald, 2009; Oedewald et al., 2011; Hollnagel, 2011). Organizational future orientation is defined as the ability to identify and interpret changes in the environment and trigger adequate responses to ensure long-term survival and success (Rohrbeck and Bade, 2012). The challenge is that organizations need to balance between being aware to the context "here and now" and being future-oriented. This study suggests that enhancing both safety culture and foresight culture strengthens the ability and willingness of organizations to make sense of what is deemed to be relevant or possible today and in the future. It is proposed that the integration of safety culture approach and organizational future orientation enhances organizational capabilities to develop mindfulness to new risks, new hazard mechanisms or other unexpected conditions, which could be based on emerging social, technical or environmental megatrends.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Event21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015 - Helsinki, Finland
Duration: 25 Aug 201527 Aug 2015

Conference

Conference21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015
Abbreviated titleNoFS2015
CountryFinland
CityHelsinki
Period25/08/1527/08/15

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future orientation
ability
climate change
globalization
digitalization
major event
knowledge transfer
production process
science
cultural studies
population development
air traffic
interdependence
resources
labor
cause
society

Cite this

Gotcheva, N., Molarius, R., Dufva, M., & Wessberg, N. (2015). Safe and future-proof: Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. Paper presented at 21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015, Helsinki, Finland.
Gotcheva, Nadezhda ; Molarius, Riitta ; Dufva, Mikko ; Wessberg, Nina. / Safe and future-proof : Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. Paper presented at 21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015, Helsinki, Finland.
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author = "Nadezhda Gotcheva and Riitta Molarius and Mikko Dufva and Nina Wessberg",
year = "2015",
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note = "21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015, NoFS2015 ; Conference date: 25-08-2015 Through 27-08-2015",

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Gotcheva, N, Molarius, R, Dufva, M & Wessberg, N 2015, 'Safe and future-proof: Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation' Paper presented at 21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015, Helsinki, Finland, 25/08/15 - 27/08/15, .

Safe and future-proof : Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. / Gotcheva, Nadezhda; Molarius, Riitta; Dufva, Mikko; Wessberg, Nina.

2015. Paper presented at 21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015, Helsinki, Finland.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceConference articleScientific

TY - CONF

T1 - Safe and future-proof

T2 - Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation

AU - Gotcheva, Nadezhda

AU - Molarius, Riitta

AU - Dufva, Mikko

AU - Wessberg, Nina

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - Societies today are profoundly affected by sweeping megatrends, such as globalisation, digitalization, aging, climate change and resource scarcity, that challenge current organizations in different ways. Work is increasingly carried out in virtual organizational networks and a growing number of companies perform their activities in multicultural environments due to the globalisation and increasing interdependence. Demographic changes, such as aging create challenges regarding knowledge transfer and sustaining skilled labour. Resource scarcity may challenge the production processes, while climate change may have a variety of impacts by creating exceptional weather conditions, which may cause major events with large-scale implications. Navigating these megatrends and dealing with the ever-changing operational environment is a must for ensuring organizational survival and success. In safety-critical organizations, such as nuclear, mining, aviation and healthcare, it is especially important to detect and interpret weak signals on changes and to react properly, since failure to do so may have significant safety consequences for people and the environment. This study aims at exploring how to future-proof and enhance safety in safety-critical organizations in a dynamic context marked by a variety of megatrends. This conceptual work draws on cultural studies, safety science, organizational science and foresight research to propose an alignment of a safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. A good safety culture can be seen as the organizational potential for safety; the ability and willingness to succeed in varying conditions and to understand and act upon the risks on a daily basis (Reiman and Oedewald, 2009; Oedewald et al., 2011; Hollnagel, 2011). Organizational future orientation is defined as the ability to identify and interpret changes in the environment and trigger adequate responses to ensure long-term survival and success (Rohrbeck and Bade, 2012). The challenge is that organizations need to balance between being aware to the context "here and now" and being future-oriented. This study suggests that enhancing both safety culture and foresight culture strengthens the ability and willingness of organizations to make sense of what is deemed to be relevant or possible today and in the future. It is proposed that the integration of safety culture approach and organizational future orientation enhances organizational capabilities to develop mindfulness to new risks, new hazard mechanisms or other unexpected conditions, which could be based on emerging social, technical or environmental megatrends.

AB - Societies today are profoundly affected by sweeping megatrends, such as globalisation, digitalization, aging, climate change and resource scarcity, that challenge current organizations in different ways. Work is increasingly carried out in virtual organizational networks and a growing number of companies perform their activities in multicultural environments due to the globalisation and increasing interdependence. Demographic changes, such as aging create challenges regarding knowledge transfer and sustaining skilled labour. Resource scarcity may challenge the production processes, while climate change may have a variety of impacts by creating exceptional weather conditions, which may cause major events with large-scale implications. Navigating these megatrends and dealing with the ever-changing operational environment is a must for ensuring organizational survival and success. In safety-critical organizations, such as nuclear, mining, aviation and healthcare, it is especially important to detect and interpret weak signals on changes and to react properly, since failure to do so may have significant safety consequences for people and the environment. This study aims at exploring how to future-proof and enhance safety in safety-critical organizations in a dynamic context marked by a variety of megatrends. This conceptual work draws on cultural studies, safety science, organizational science and foresight research to propose an alignment of a safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. A good safety culture can be seen as the organizational potential for safety; the ability and willingness to succeed in varying conditions and to understand and act upon the risks on a daily basis (Reiman and Oedewald, 2009; Oedewald et al., 2011; Hollnagel, 2011). Organizational future orientation is defined as the ability to identify and interpret changes in the environment and trigger adequate responses to ensure long-term survival and success (Rohrbeck and Bade, 2012). The challenge is that organizations need to balance between being aware to the context "here and now" and being future-oriented. This study suggests that enhancing both safety culture and foresight culture strengthens the ability and willingness of organizations to make sense of what is deemed to be relevant or possible today and in the future. It is proposed that the integration of safety culture approach and organizational future orientation enhances organizational capabilities to develop mindfulness to new risks, new hazard mechanisms or other unexpected conditions, which could be based on emerging social, technical or environmental megatrends.

M3 - Conference article

ER -

Gotcheva N, Molarius R, Dufva M, Wessberg N. Safe and future-proof: Aligning safety culture framework and organizational future orientation. 2015. Paper presented at 21st Nordic Research Conference on Safety, NoFS2015, Helsinki, Finland.