Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP5

Learning organisations for nuclear safety

Project ID: FIKS-CT-2001-00162
Funded under: FP5-EAECTP C

Abstract

The main objective of the LearnSafe project was to create methods and tools for supporting processes of organisational learning at the nuclear power plants. Organisational learning has become increasingly important for the nuclear industry in its adaptation to changes in the political and economic environment, changing regulatory requirements, a changing work force, changing technology in the plants, and the changing organisation of nuclear power plants and power utilities. The danger during a rapid process of change is that minor problems may trigger a chain of events leading to actual degrading of safety and/or diminishing political and public trust in the safety standards of the particular nuclear power plant, utility or corporation.
The focus of the project was senior managers at nuclear power plants and power utilities who are responsible for strategic choice and resource allocation. This focus was selected with the understanding that their decisions, approaches and attitudes have an important influence both on safety and economy of the nuclear power plants. The LearnSafe project has developed methods and tools that can be used in the management of change and in ensuring efficient organisational learning.
The project was set up in two major phases, which covered both empirical investigations and theoretical considerations. The first phase placed a focus on management of change and the second on organisational learning. The empirical part of the first phase of the project collected senior manager views on challenges that are facing nuclear power plants today. This data set contains about 800 statements collected from nearly 200 persons in five countries, ten nuclear power plants and one international organisation. The analysed data was used for an assessment of strategies, plans and actions for coping with the challenges. These were furthermore developed to concrete suggestions for improvements targeted to major stakeholders in the nuclear field.

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