Safety and Loss Prevention

Human Decisions and System Performance

Human Decisions and System Performance
  • Date From 12th December 2023
  • Date To 12th December 2023
  • Price Free of charge, open to all
  • Location Institution of Civil Engineers, One Great George Street, Westminster, London SW1P 3AA and Online


This Hazards Forum event will discuss the human contribution to decision-making and system performance, across sectors and disciplines. The Hazards Forum considers this subject particularly important; even as engineered systems become more complex, the need to intervene at times will continue to arise with little or no reduction in urgency.  How humans make their decisions and how this contributes to overall system performance becomes increasingly significant.

This event gives the opportunity to:

  • hear from leaders in their fields discussing this increasingly important subject
  • ask your own questions as part of the discussion
  • meet and network with peers across sectors and disciplines.

The material presented in this event has not been peer-reviewed by IChemE. Any opinions are the presenters' own and do not necessarily represent those of IChemE or the Safety and Loss Prevention SIG. The information is given in good faith but without any liability on the part of IChemE.


Rhona Flin, Professor of Industrial Psychology, Aberdeen Business School, Robert Gordon University

Rhona's research examines human performance in high-risk work settings focusing on safety, organisational culture, and non-technical skills in the energy sector, healthcare and aviation. She is a Board member of Step Change in (Offshore) Safety and a Trustee of the Clinical Human Factors Group. Her books include Safety at the Sharp End: A Guide to Non-Technical Skills (2008, with O’Connor & Crichton – now being revised).

She will outline the background to a non-technical skills approach and its application in higher risk settings.

Helen Conlin, Head of HSSE, STL

Helen Conlin is Head of HSSE at STL and a member of the IChemE Major Hazards Committee and the Safety and Loss Prevention Special Interest Group committee. She is a chartered chemical engineer, Fellow of IChemE and IChemE registered safety professional with over 25 years’ experience in regulation, industry and consultancy and extensive experience supporting high and medium hazard facilities covering technical, human and organisational factors across a wide range of sectors.

Since 2021 Helen has been co-chair of an IChemE Major Hazards Committee project to improve process safety competence assurance for chemical engineers (Part 1), process safety professionals (Part 2) and organisations (Part 3). Improving recognition of the importance and contribution of Non Technical Skills to engineers’ process safety competence has been a key objective.

Helen will present the approach, findings and output from a recent IChemE project on process safety competence including the relevance of non-technical skills to professional engineers and process safety (technical/system safety) competence.

Andrew Sherry, Professor of Materials and Structures, University of Manchester

Andrew is Professor of Materials and Structures at the University of Manchester and a senior advisor to the nuclear industry. Previously he was Chief Scientist and a member of the Board of the National Nuclear Laboratory and Directed the Dalton Nuclear Institute at Manchester. He provides independent expert advice to Government and Industry on nuclear safety, research, and innovation. Andrew is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Nuclear Institute and the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining.

He will discuss the role of emotional intelligence in safety in high hazard sectors.


17:30–21:00 GMT


17:30–18:00 GMT - Registration and Refreshments

18:00–19:00 GMT - Presentations

19:00–20:00 GMT - Q&A and Panel Discussion

20:00–21:00 GMT - Drinks and Canapes

Disclaimer: IChemE will not be storing or controlling any data linked to this event.

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