In my previous letter, the committee plans were mentioned which were presented to the Institute’s Technical Leadership Board and received with support. I would like to take this opportunity to now focus on a few issues:
We welcomed Dr Jonathan Earthy, Lloyd’s Register Human Factors Coordinator, to our committee. Jonathan brings a lot of knowledge to the Human Element SIG. We discussed the membership of the SIG's Nexus group which has grown to over 60 from 30 since the end of last year. There is also the ‘correspondence group’ formed by members who indicated their interest in the human element on their IMarEST membership forms. There are over 200 members in this group and we would encourage them, if they have an active interest, to join the Human Element SIG Nexus group and join in the discussions.
We have had two interesting and lively discussions recently. One, started by Monica Lundh, on bullying and harassment and the other related to CHIRP (Confidential Hazardous Incident Reporting Programme). Both discussions are still live if you wish to comment. In the latter case, we have invited Capt. John Rose, the Director of CHIRP, into the discussion as well as two of his colleagues. Anyone is welcomed to start a discussion on Nexus, we only ask you to explain your points, provide specific questions and backup information. We will shortly be asking members of the Nexus group to put up a profile. More on that soon.
We discussed the new structure of the SIG website page and will now start to put this together. There is a slide available posted in Nexus on this matter. The intention is to provide members with a human element resource/knowledge centre as well as a place to store our working documents. We would hope to start setting up and populating the site within the next two months in order to have a viable resource by the end of the third quarter. Look out for updates.
Following the January meeting, the committee identified a number of focus areas. Focus areas are areas where we believe IMarEST should make a difference in the marine industry and which will require some research and work. The focus areas are: - Workload; The Resilient Organisation; Changing the Paradigm; Ship and Engine Room Design; Human-Centered Design; Automated Machinery Interfaces; Changing Skill Set; Teamwork Aboard; Changing Life Aboard; Standardisation.
The discussion at the meeting centered on the first three, which are interconnected. As we all may recall, ISM was introduced in the 1990’s and the development of management systems made a major difference to safety, particularly in the tanker sector. Today’s management systems are built on ISM and increasingly on environmental requirements. There is evidence that management systems, as well as a variety of compliance requirements, not only overload those onboard but inhibit the freedom to act. The discussion was about whether we can roll back some of these requirements and give more freedom to those onboard to act. A lot more to come on this.
The next update will be in June, after our next meeting.
Once more if you want to access the discussions, please join the Human Element SIG Nexus group through the link above. Some slides from the meeting have been included in the group for you to see.
Chair, Human Element SIG