Intervention in Multi-cultural Organizations -Prevention of Accidents as political change processes

Mette Bang Dyhrberg, Annette Kamp, Christian Koch

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    A selective study of literature within safety culture, corporate culture and organisational theory have shown that the safety culture approach can benefit from the corporate culture approaches and organisational theory dealing with political processes. The implicit models of organisation within mainstream safety culture approaches is over rationalististic compared with day to day life of organisations. A simplistic model of mans behaviour, and too abbreviated understanding of the total set of goals and means in action in organisation and rather simple change management models flaws the safety culture approaches.The Concept of a multicultural organisation thus aims at encompassing the multitude of actor positions within an organisation with possible influence on the prevention work. A case study within industry is used to demonstrate the benefits of mobilizing these additional approaches. It is shown how different sets of meaning assigned to accidents -cultures- is in conflict and that the accident analysis process leads to the domination of one of them; the "faulty human behaviour" perception. Hence an intervention method for prevention of accidents must built on first an understanding of an organisation as a Multi-cultural Organisation. Second on change processes as political processes where the needed change have to be negotiated and reshaped.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalSafety Science
    Publication statusPublished - 1999

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