This paper summarizes results from a 15 year research and development effort to address human and organizational factors in design and operation of marine structures including floating and fixed platforms, pipelines, and ships (including FPSOs). The focus of this paper is on applications experiences that have been developed in association with innovative deepwater structures.

Proactive, reactive, and interactive engineering and management approaches to achieve desirable and acceptable quality and reliability in deepwater structures are outlined. Quality is defined as the combination of serviceability, safety, durability, and compatibility. Reliability is defined as thelikelihood of developing acceptable quality during the lifecycle of the structure (design through decommissioning). Three key strategies are developed that can be employed in the three approaches. These include reduction of likelihoods of malfunctions, reduction of the effects of malfunctions, and increasing the detection and correction of malfunctions.

Application: Application of two instruments developed and employed in the proactive, reactive, and interactive approaches are illustrated with experiences developed during their application to design of an innovative deepwater structure. These instruments include a Quality Management Assessment System (QMAS©) and a Structure Risk Analysis System (SYRAS©). Techniques to reflect the difficult to capture human and organizational factors in quantitative analyses are summarized.


An important starting point in addressing human and organizational factors (HOF) in the quality (combination of serviceability, safety, durability, and compatibility) and reliability (likelihood of realizing desirable quality) of offshore structures is to recognize that while human and organizational malfunctions are inevitable, their occurrence can be reduced and their effects mitigated by improving how structures are designed, constructed, operated, and maintenance. Engineering can improve the processes and products of design, construction, operations, maintenance, and decommissioning to reduce the malfunction promoting characteristics, and to increase malfunction detection and recovery characteristics. Engineering can help develop systems for what people can and will do, not for what they should do. Engineering can also have important influences on the organization and management aspects of these systems.

Organizations have important and pervasive influences on the reliability of offshore structure systems. High reliability organizations (HRO) have been shown to be able develop high reliability systems that operate relatively error free over long periods of time and in many cases, in very hazardous environments. HRO go beyond Total Quality Managementand International Standards Organization certifications in their quest for quality and reliability. They have extensive process auditing procedures to help spot safety problems and they have reward systems that encourage risk mitigating behaviors, They have high quality standards and maintain their risk perception and awareness. Most important, such organizations maintain a strong command and control system that provides for organization robustness or defect tolerance.

Experience clearly indicates that to effectively change the situation, engineers must learn how to address this challenge by analyzing offshore structure ?systems.' In this work, an offshore structure system is defined as consisting of six major interactive components:

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