Dr Simon Bennett

Director of the Civil Safety and Security Unit

School/Department: Business, School of



Dr Simon Bennett directs the Civil Safety and Security Unit. He is interested in the organisational social economic and political origins of risk. For example loss of organisational memory mindlessness groupthink reductionism satisficing hollowing-out aggressive profit-seeking and graft. He has published extensively on aviation safety issues and has spent over 1500 hours on the jump-seats of a variety of rotary and fixed-wing aircraft including the EC135 and A321. His aviation research takes in flight-deck human factors and functionalist cultural transformation tools such as crew resource management (CRM). He is a Member of the Air Safety Group of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS). He has trained pilots in CRM and fatigue-risk management has spent time in a B737 simulator and has taken safety and emergency procedures (SEP) courses on a variety of types including the B747-800. Dr Bennett has worked with the Royal Air Force and UK National Police Air Service (NPAS) on human-factors issues. His latest book Safety in Aviation and Astronautics. A socio-technical approach was published by Routledge in 2022.


Aviation safety Flight-deck human factors Team-based working Military tactics Anti-terror tactics Counterinsurgency tactics Psychological warfare (PSYOPS) Policing Funding secured from a variety of sources including consultancy contracts with commercial airlines and rail engineering companies


(0) Bennett, S.A. (2001) Human Error - by Design? Basingstoke: Palgrave-Macmillan. ISBN 1 899287 72 8

Bennett, S.A. (2006) A Sociology of Commercial Flight Crew. Aldershot: Ashgate. ISBN 0 7546 4317 4

Bennett, S.A. (2009) Londonland. An ethnography of labour in a world city. London: Middlesex University Press/Libri Publishing. ISBN 978 1 904750 64 2

Bennett, S.A. (2010) Insecurity in the Supply of Electrical Energy: An emerging threat to information and communication technologies? Faringdon: Libri Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978 1 907471 23 0 (web pdf)

Bennett, S.A. (Ed.) (2012) Innovative Thinking in Risk, Crisis and Disaster Management. Farnham: Gower. ISBN 978 1 4094 1194 9

Bennett, S.A. (2014) How Pilots Live: An Examination of the Lifestyle of Commercial Pilots. Oxford: Peter Lang International Academic Publishers. ISBN 3034317220

Bennett, S.A. (2015) Aviation Safety and Security: The Importance of Teamwork, Leadership, Creative Thinking and Active Learning. Faringdon: Libri Publishing Ltd. ISBNs 978-1-909818-68-2 (web pdf) 978-1-909818-69-9 (e-pub)

Bennett, S.A. (2019) Systems-thinking for Safety. A short introduction to the theory and practice of systems-thinking. Oxford: Peter Lang International Academic Publishers. ISBN 9781788743778

Bennett, S.A. (2022) Safety in Aviation and Astronautics: A socio-technical approach. London: Routledge. Hb: 978-0-367-62887-1 Pb: 978-0-367-62885-7 eBook: 978-1-003-11128-3.


PhDs supervised to completion:

1 ‘Fratricide in Air Operations. Opening the Black-Box: Revealing the “Social”’

2 ‘Migrating commercial aviation crew resource management standards to health-care as a means of mitigating the risk of medical error’


MSc Risk Crisis and Disaster Management

Medicine MBChB (Patient Safety module)

MSc Quality and Safety in Healthcare (Patient Safety module)

Undergraduate module in Crisis Management (MN3145)

Press and media

Aviation safety Flight-deck human factors Team-based working Military tactics Anti-terror tactics Counterinsurgency tactics Psychological warfare (PSYOPS) Policing


Military history


Sheffield City Polytechnic England 1978-1982 BA (Hons) Public Administration (2.1)

Brunel University England 1992-1993 MA Communications and Technology

Brunel University 1993-1997 PhD Science and Technology Studies (STS) (majors: social constructs and the sociology of scientific knowledge) 

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