Human Factors in High Tech Societies

Jens Rasmussen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearch


The problems and methods of the Human Factors profession are traditionally closely related to industrial and mechanical engineering and to quantitative, behavioristic methods of analysis. However, during recent decades technological development has dramatically changed the requirements for human factors expertise in the direction of a combination of thorough knowledge of human cognitive processes and competence with respect to complex work domains. In the paper, this development is reviewed and a number a key problems related to high tech installations are discussed such as, e.g., cognitive work analysis, mental models and strategies, error tolerance, and co-operative decision making,together with some methodological aspects. Finally, the question is raised whether Human Factors is still a profession or, rather, a conceptual market place for cross disciplinary co-operation in which the Human Factors society serves to maintain a common currency of terms and methods.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 1987 annual meeting of the Human Factors Society
Number of pages12
Publication date1987
Publication statusPublished - 1987
Externally publishedYes
EventAnnual meeting of the Human Factors Society - New York, United States
Duration: 1 Oct 19871 Oct 1987


OtherAnnual meeting of the Human Factors Society
CountryUnited States
CityNew York


  • Cognitive work analysis
  • Complex System Analysis
  • Current HF problems
  • High tech societies
  • Human factors profession


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