The point of an investigation is not to find where people went wrong; it is to understand why their assessments and actions made sense at the time.

Sidney Dekker

6 responses to Sidney Dekker


    Could this be Sidney Dekker?



    Whilst of course their actions may have made sense to them, they may not make sense to anyone else. In situations where there is a deliberate violation of a known rule, albeit that deliberate violation may not have been as a direct result of a considered action, it does leave those charged with responsibility for the management of safety with a dilemma. Are we to prosecute (persecute) those who do not think much or at all? We are all guilty of failures of thinking ‘in the moment’. Should we solely single out those who are guilty of this failure in safety critical situations or should we accept that it is inherently human to do so? In my experience, I find that when questioned after an incident, many people confirm that they did not know why they did what they did. To what extent should this scenario be factored into society’s post-incident consideration?


      Matthew Squair 07/01/2016 at 1:12 pm

      There’s a broader question of why the law has not been updated with all that we now empirically know about human psychology. Not just in regard to culpability, but also to how evidence is derived, prosecutorial and investigative malfeasance and so on.



    Thank you Matthew, I now have a new person to research – Lesley Lamport. Perhaps more background to Kevin Driscoll’s slide deck. I really appreciate your work.