The Wrong Question to the Right People. A Critical View of Severity Classification Methods in ATM Experimental Projects

  • Alberto Pasquini
  • Simone Pozzi
  • Luca Save
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5219)


The knowledge of operational experts plays a fundamental role in performing safety assessments in safety critical organizations. The complexity and socio-technical nature of such systems produce hazardous situations which require a thorough understanding of concrete operational scenarios and cannot be anticipated by simply analyzing single failures of specific functions. This paper addresses some limitations regarding state-of-the-art safety assessment techniques, with special reference to the use of severity classes associated to specific outcomes (e.g. accident, incident, no safety effect, etc.). Such classes tend to assume a linear link between single hazards considered in isolation and specified consequences for safety, thus neglecting the intrinsic complexity of the systems under analysis and reducing the opportunities for an effective involvement of operational experts. An alternative approach is proposed to overcome these limitations, by allowing operational people to prioritize the severity of hazards observed in concrete operational scenarios and by involving them in the definition of the possible means of mitigation.


Safety Assessment Real Time Simulation Operational Expert Severity Class Hazardous Situation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alberto Pasquini
    • 1
  • Simone Pozzi
    • 1
    • 2
  • Luca Save
    • 1
    • 3
  1. 1.Deep Blue srlRomeItaly
  2. 2.Department of Psychology of Social and Developmental ProcessesSapienza University of RomeRomeItaly
  3. 3.Media and Communication DepartmentUniversity of SienaSienaItaly

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