Safety culture and organisational resilience in the nuclear industry throughout the different lifecycle phases

    Research output: Book/ReportReport


    The aim of this publication is to advance the safety culture knowledge and practice based on the experience gained in the Nordic nuclear sector. A further aim is to encourage the nuclear industry to reflect on its prevalent safety management approaches. The publication provides a view of safety culture which follows the premises of resilience engineering. A good safety culture can be seen as a potential for an organisation to succeed in varying conditions. The publication describes a method for assessing safety culture. Furthermore, the report summarizes commonly used safety culture development interventions and analyses human performance programmes as a means of improving safety culture. Since the operational phase has traditionally been the main focus of the nuclear industry, some of the practical challenges in the domain stem from the need for developing a sound safety culture also in the other lifecycle phases, such as the design and construction of new builds, or major modernisations in the operating plants. Such projects are often carried out by a network of subcontractors rather than by the licensee organisation. The report elaborates on the cultural tensions in nuclear power design activities. In order to improve the quality and management of safety in design activities, safety culture approaches should take better account of the networked nature of the work processes and the specifics of the local context, the need for requirements management and the importance of designers' responsibilities for safety. The practical and theoretical challenges for applying the concept of safety culture in a large, complex dynamic network of subcontractors were analysed, and the main aspects of developing safety culture in a network of organisations were initially conceptualized. It should be highlighted that the core tasks and typical challenges in lifecycle phases of a nuclear power plant differ, which may require different safety management and safety culture development approaches.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationEspoo
    PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
    Number of pages128
    ISBN (Electronic)978-951-38-8306-5
    Publication statusPublished - 2015
    MoE publication typeD4 Published development or research report or study

    Publication series

    SeriesVTT Technology


    • safety culture
    • nuclear power
    • organisational factors
    • nuclear safety
    • resillience


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