Ripples in a pond: An open system model of the evolution of safety culture

F. J Joel Morley, Don Harris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


The development of an effective safety culture is essential to promote safe operations. Previous studies haveeither identified the characteristics of effective safety culture analytically, inferring them from signs and symbolsderived from working practices, or have restricted the study of the development of safety culture to workerswithin an organisation. This paper describes a large-scale survey-based study in which the factors influencingthe evolution of safety culture are identified empirically and, drawing upon open systems theory, are alsoextended beyond the bounds of the organisation. Three major determinants of safety culture are identified:safety concerns, influences and actions. Sub-components within each of these categories are also identified andthe relationship between them is hypothesised.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-15
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Occupational Safety and Ergonomics: JOSE
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • In-depth interviews
  • Open systems
  • Safety culture
  • Safety management
  • Workplace surveys

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Safety Research
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Ripples in a pond: An open system model of the evolution of safety culture'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this