The Social Construction and Deconstruction of Risk

  • Heather Höpfl
Part of the Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research book series (NTHR, volume 16)


In a paper presented to the 43rd IASS Conference in Rome in 1990, Capt. Heino Caesar, at that time General Manager, Flight Operations, Inspection and Safety Pilot for Lufthansa, identified a number of critical issues relating to air safety which require considered attention. In particular, Caesar drew attention to what he saw as an overreliance on technical and technological developments in the pursuit of improved air safety at the expense of a more systematic analysis of the organisational context. As an exceptionally experienced pilot, Caesar realised that many of the problems he encountered in his working life arose from the way in which tasks were classified and perceived, that safety was as much a problem of social construction as of technical resolution. As justification for this contention, he cited the evidence that over the previous thirty one years, that is up to 1990, in cases of total losses, 76% of cases were recorded as being the result of errors by cockpit crew.


Human Factor Social Construction Organisational Context Safety Management Safety Culture 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Heather Höpfl
    • 1
  1. 1.Newcastle Business School University of Northumbria at Newcastle Northumberland BuildingNewcastle Upon TyneUK

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