Ergoship conference 2019

The third conference on Maritime Human Factors was held on the 24th and 25th of September 2019 in Haugesund, Norway. The scope was «Human-centred shipping – is there a future without it?»

Shipping at present is a business with more and larger ships, fewer crew members and more technology. The impact on people of these developments needs to be studied and understood. The tasks and workplaces must be developed in step with technological, regulatory and organisational changes, and should be carried out in close cooperation with end users.

Human Factors, also known as ergonomics, is a scientific discipline, dealing with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and is a profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human wellbeing and overall system performance.

Issues of concern for shipping are on several levels, and many of them are found both on an operations level as well as an organisational level: safety and organisational culture, resilience to crises and psychosocial climate. Several relate to education and training; there is a clear need for more non-technical subjects in education such as leadership, group dynamics, intercultural issues, Human Factors. Yet others are more complex and have many stakeholders; fatigue at sea, emergency management, ship administration, design of usable systems, automation and digitalisation, and the distribution of tasks and responsibilities between ship and shore.