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Just Culture: Balancing Safety and Accountability

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  168 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Drawing on his experience with practitioners (in nursing, air traffic control and professional aviation) whose errors were turned into crimes, Sidney Dekker lays out a new view of just culture. He shows how to create an environment where learning and accountability are fairly and constructively balanced.
Paperback, 153 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Ashgate Publishing (first published January 1st 2007)
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May 24, 2011 rated it it was ok
Very dry, but raises some interesting points.

This book got famous because it was what Sully Sullenberger was reading when his plane went down.

Ciprian Dobre-Trifan
The book presents a very important facts and examples based analysis of the very essence of justice, and how much it needs to change in order to be appropriate for the current complexities and responsibilities of modern professionals and society as a whole.
Jerry Mahn
Sep 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Dekker looks at the issue of what organizations do when something goes wrong. Do we find the easiest employee to blame, and fire them, thus feeling we took care of the problem, or do we create a culture in which employees feel empowered to admit mistakes, evaluate the circumstances that led to it, and then learn from the mistake as an organization? Very interesting issues...
Emanuele Gemelli
Mar 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: paper
Another fascinating book from Dekker; plenty of ideas to ponder on and reflect. In my line of job I was already putting under scrutiny the "repercussion" or "retribution" model and this book provides with deep insight on how to move the discussion to the next level. I did non have an answer to people telling me: "sure, no blame, but if he makes a mistake it is fault and he should pay the consequences". Obviously in the realm of safety this never solves anything, but I was finding very difficult ...more
Terry Tucker
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is good reference book. The author uses a number of case studies to illustrate his points. I am in Safety Risk Management. We are always looking for ways to improve the reporting, self-disclosure and investigative process. We use the typical RCA tools that others use - Bow Tie, HFACS, Fish Bone..etc. This booj helps bring together a few of the more esoteric elements that organizations have trouble with. All in all, a good book, it could have been shorter, but then it wouldn't sell as a book ...more
Nikolay Theosom
Nov 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
pretty great. his rhetoric around criminalization of human error is top notch
Matthew Horvat
Aug 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bad stuff happens to good people. The truth turns into people's versions. Something serious can draw media and even court attention. A code of silence typically ensues because it is to easily to be unjustly accused. And it is no wonder why this happens. Rather than increase reporting of accidents, the author suggests that we generate a culture of honestly disclosing accidents with the only intention of learning to avoid repeated mistakes.

The book is littered with examples from real cases where
Apr 13, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The book is about how punishing a single person for an unintended loss of life does not help the system (healthcare, air traffic, etc) keep similar incidents from happening again and is inappropriate because that single person is 1) part of a larger system 2) probably trying to be safe 3) also traumatized by inflicting injury unintentionally. The other main idea is that people tend to make judgements based on the outcome rather than on the situations and actions that they are actually supposed t ...more
Apr 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lingua-inglese
Un libro controcorrente.
Why do we blame? In this book Dekker starts from a terrible story about a nurse, with 25-years of experience, charged and convicted for manslaughter because she erroneously mixed the wrong dose of xylocard causing the death of a 3 year old baby.
We need to blame to try to explain what went wrong, finding a scapegoat, a bad apple but we never yet understood the lesson. Healthcare is a risky business. A just culture don't blame nobody but searches problems and stimulates in
Oct 09, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: studies
Good read
May 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Must read for everyone working in a high stakes profession, from medicine to mining to aviation. And for lawyers.
Alastair Lack
Sep 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bought
The quote in another review 'bad stuff happens to good people' is so true, and this should be required reading for every HR manager and CEO. Slightly complex language, but the messages are clear. ...more
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Sidney W. A. Dekker (born 1969, "near Amsterdam"),is a Professor at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia, where he founded the Safety Science Innovation Lab. He is also Honorary Professor of Psychology at the University of Queensland.

Previously, Dekker was Professor of human factors and system safety at Lund University in Sweden,where he founded the Leonardo da Vinci Laboratory for Complexit

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