One of the many important lessons learnt about nuclear safety over the years has been that human aspects of nuclear safety are as important as any technical issue that may arise in the course of nuclear operations. The international nuclear community can work together to identify and address issues associated with components and systems and compare operational experiences, but identifying how human behaviour affects safety and the best approaches to examine this behaviour from country to country remains less common.
Practical experience has nevertheless shown that there are important differences in how people work together and communicate across borders. People’s behaviours, attitudes and values do not stop at the gate of a nuclear installation, and awareness of the systemic nature of culture and its deeper aspects, such as the dynamics of how values and assumptions influence behaviours, continues to evolve.
The Country Specific Safety Culture Forum was created to gain a better understanding of how a national context relates to safety culture and how operators and regulators should think about these effects in their day-to-day activities, with the goal to ensure safe nuclear operations. The second NEA safety culture forum – a collaborative effort between the Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA), the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO) and the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority in Finland (STUK) – was held in Finland in March 2019. This report outlines the process used to conduct the forum, reveals its findings and hopes to inspire the nuclear community to further reflect and take action.