Marbles: The Application of Input-Output Concepts to Safety Management Systems
Journal of Aviation Technology and Engineering
The goal of this research was to apply the economic concept titled Input-Output Analysis to an aviation safety concept titled Safety Management Systems (SMS). Input-Output (IO) is based upon the interrelationships of various components of an economic system and what happens to the system when one or more of those components changes. Since SMS is, by definition, a system with definable components, the research sought to determine if the interrelationships between those components could be
... nts could be determined and quantified. The term "marbles" was used to describe the About the Authors Tim Brady, PhD Professor, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, holds a PhD in Higher Education Administration, an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate, and is a former military pilot and navigator. Brady's research interests include aviation history and aviation safety. Correspondence concerning this article should be sent to email@example.com. Alan Stolzer, PhD Professor, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, holds a PhD in Quality Systems, an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate, and an A&P mechanic certificate. Stolzer's research interests include Safety Management Systems and aviation safety programs. Anthony Brickhouse, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, associate professor of aerospace and occupational safety, holds a BS in Aerospace Engineering and an MS in Aeronautical Science, and is an air safety investigator. Brickhouse's research interests include aviation safety and accident investigation. Antonio Cortés, associate professor and chair of Applied Aviation Sciences at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, holds a PhD in business administration, an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate, and is a former military aviator, airline pilot, and government air safety investigator. Cortés' research interests include aviation hazard analysis and suborbital space flight. Dan McCune, associate vice president for safety at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, holds a BS in human resource management an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate, and is a former US Army pilot flying fixed wing and helicopters. McCune has extensive safety training as a certified air safety investigator, and specializes in safety culture development and safety management system enhancement. Jayathi Raghavan, PhD professor, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, holds a PhD in mathematics and an MS in computer science. Raghavan's research interests include numerical methods, computational mathematics and mathematics education. activities that led to the IO-SMS matrix. Marbles was used as a metaphor for quantifying interrelationships. A team of SMS experts was assembled to collectively determine the interrelationships among the four components of SMS. Next the team determined the relative values of the elements and processes inside each component. (There are 24 discrete items-elements and processes-in SMS.) Once these values were determined and placed into a 24 6 24 matrix, IO matrix mathematics was applied to produce the IO-SMS Matrix. The SMS matrix that resulted from this experiment may be a powerful management tool that can determine the impact of any numerical input, such as an SMS survey, on the total system. It can also be used to perform "what if" analysis by changing the value of one element or process within the SMS. The weakness of the IO-SMS matrix is that it is highly sensitive to the original input data that define the interrelationships among the components.