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Appl Ergon. 1997 Apr;28(2):109-19.

A user-centred design approach for introducing computer-based process information systems.

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Human Reliability Associates, Parbold, Lancs, UK.


There has been an increasing tendency to use computer-based process information systems as the main interface through which operators interact with complex industrial systems. Although the new technology has produced greater hardware reliability and maintainability, the corresponding potential benefits for operability have not always been achieved. Automation has introduced new forms of design and operating errors. One of the major reasons for this problem has been the lack of human factors advice and user participation early in the design process. This paper discusses a user-centred design approach to increase operability and user acceptance of new technologies and working practices. Application of this approach in the context of a chemical plant indicates its promise, but also highlights the difficulties involved in gaining user participation and management commitment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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