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Organization at the Limit: Lessons from the Columbia Disaster (Anglais) Relié – 18 juillet 2005


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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

The authors lift up the heavy curtain of secrecy at NASA tolook at the many backstage decisions that led to the Columbia space shuttle disaster. Organizational leaders toooften fail to learn from their past mistakes, but readers of thisvolume will be better equipped to understand and hopefully preventfuture catastrophic failures. Scott D. Sagan, StanfordUniversity


As the influential philosopher Karl Popper observed, toavoid perishing along with our false theories, we systematicallytry to eliminate our false theories, letting them die in our stead.The Columbia disaster is a stark and tragic lesson in theconsequences of false theories. Using the Columbia disasterand NASA as its focal points, Organization at the Limitoffers a rich, multifaceted examination that reveals how and whycomplex organizations using risky technologies often produce andsustain false theories. The analysis yields insights indispensablefor those who wish to help such organizations unlearn their falsetheories, learn more truthful ones, and avoid the disasters thatlurk beyond their limits. Joel A. C. Baum, University ofToronto


The Columbia disaster has much to teach anystudent and manager of organizations. In this marvellouscollection, Professors Farjoun and Starbuck have assembled some ofthe most profound and relevant thinking about the hitherto hiddenvulnerabilities of today s organizations, their sources, andjust how to address them. Readers will be most amplyrewarded. Danny Miller, HEC Montreal


The CAIB report was the most sophisticated officialexamination of an accident ever. Now we have an exhaustive socialscience exploration which amplifies, extends, enriches, and even attimes contradicts the Board s analysis. A variety oftheoretical perspectives are applied, generating many freshinsights. Charles Perrow, Yale University

Howard Aldrich, Review on Amazon:

After two horrible disasters, do you think that NASA has learnedfrom its mistakes, and that it will never happen again? If so, youneed to read this book! In 18 well–written chapters, the editorshave assembled a set of experts on organizations and disasters toanalyze lessons from the Columbia disaster. Because the Challengerdisaster foreshadowed many of the problems that subsequently turnedup in official investigations of the Columbia disaster, it alsofigures heavily in this edited book. The authors demonstrate theanalytic power of an historically informed organizational analysisof a large governmental agency under strong political pressure toproduce results with limited resources.


Two points in particular caught my eye. First, after theChallenger disaster, NASA was supposedly reorganized to placegreater emphasis on safety. However, because the organization beganto define the space exploration program as a problem of meetingproduction goals and deadlines, "safety" never achieved thepriority in the organization than it deserved. Instead of seeingthe space shuttle program as a developmental one, exploring therisky frontier of technological knowledge, NASA officials treatedit like any other flight program. Second, as anomalies continued tocrop up after flights, engineers and officials began to think aboutdeviations from acceptable practices and outcomes as "normal." Asdeviation was normalized, unusual events were taken for granted anddidn′t provoke the kind of response than one would expect from lifethreatening occurrences.


Scholars interested in organization studies, organizationallearning, systems theory, and other academic disciplines will learnmuch from this book. However, one can also hope that publicofficials will take its lessons to heart and look more closely atthe design of other risky systems that are operating close to thelimits of our scientific knowledge. Amazon

Présentation de l'éditeur

The book offers important insight relevant to Corporate, Governmentand Global organizations management in general. The internationallyrecognised authors tackle vital issues in decision making, howorganizational risk is managed, how can technological andorganizational complexities interact, what are the impediments foreffective learning and how large, medium, and small organizationscan, and in fact must, increase their resilience. Managers,organizational consultants, expert professionals, and trainingspecialists; particularly those in high risk organizations, mayfind the issues covered in the book relevant to their daily workand a potential catalyst for thought and action.
  • A timely analysis of the Columbia disaster and theorganizational lessons that can be learned from it.
  • Includes contributions from those involved in the InvestigationBoard report into the incident.
  • Tackles vital issues such as the role of time pressures andgoal conflict in decision making, and the impediments for effectivelearning.
  • Examines how organizational risk is managed and howtechnological and organizational complexities interact.
  • Assesses how large, medium, and small organizations can, and infact must, increase their resilience.
  • Questions our eagerness to embrace new technologies, yetreluctance to accept the risks of innovation.
  • Offers a step by step understanding of the complex factors thatled to disaster.


Détails sur le produit


Dans ce livre (En savoir plus)
Première phrase
On February 1, 2003, the space shuttle Columbia disintegrated in a disaster that killed its crew. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index
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4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Limits to human control over risky technology 28 octobre 2006
Par Howard Aldrich - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
After two horrible disasters, do you think that NASA has learned from its mistakes, and that it will never happen again? If so, you need to read this book! In 18 well-written chapters, the editors have assembled a set of experts on organizations and disasters to analyze lessons from the Columbia disaster. Because the Challenger disaster foreshadowed many of the problems that subsequently turned up in official investigations of the Columbia disaster, it also figures heavily in this edited book. The authors demonstrate the analytic power of an historically informed organizational analysis of a large governmental agency under strong political pressure to produce results with limited resources.

Two points in particular caught my eye. First, after the Challenger disaster, NASA was supposedly reorganized to place greater emphasis on safety. However, because the organization began to define the space exploration program as a problem of meeting production goals and deadlines, "safety" never achieved the priority in the organization than it deserved. Instead of seeing the space shuttle program as a developmental one, exploring the risky frontier of technological knowledge, NASA officials treated it like any other flight program. Second, as anomalies continued to crop up after flights, engineers and officials began to think about deviations from acceptable practices and outcomes as "normal." As deviation was normalized, unusual events were taken for granted and didn't provoke the kind of response than one would expect from life threatening occurrences.

Scholars interested in organization studies, organizational learning, systems theory, and other academic disciplines will learn much from this book. However, one can also hope that public officials will take its lessons to heart and look more closely at the design of other risky systems that are operating close to the limits of our scientific knowledge.
Good overview 31 mai 2008
Par Mr. Andrew Evans - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
A series of powerful essays from an excellent and diverse range of writers including the initial ideas on resilience engineering. Covers issues of communications over the imagery requests well.
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