Managing With Danger: An Introduction

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15 Scopus citations


This article contrasts the two dominant theoretical approaches and presents a third approach to the study of safety in organizations. Whereas view 1 tries to explain why accidents are common and view 2 tries to explain why they are rare, the present author's view, grounded in the empirical studies and theoretical analyses published in this issue of Industrial & Environmental Crisis Quarterly (Volume 9, Number 2), is that managers navigate within safety boundaries. The author stresses that (a) safety is overlaid on normal activities, (b) the safety envelope around organizations has indefinite dimensions, (c) rules are limited and managers often do not know what to do despite heavy emphasis on procedures, and (d) managers accept what they believe to be toler able imperfections. A key question they must address is how much compromise in a system of defenses they can accept before the organi zation crosses over into a state from which it cannot recover.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-151
Number of pages13
JournalOrganization & Environment
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1995

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