Safety Culture as a Team Sport: The Football Metaphor

  • Frank W. GuldenmundEmail author
  • Dylan Smibert
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 969)


Safety culture remains an elusive concept, not only for scholars and practitioners but for the workers who actually have to deal with safety on a daily basis as well. The metaphor of football provides particular working groups a medium to explore the meaning of safety culture by drawing parallels with team roles, changing working conditions, the importance of production vs. safety and the creation of safety therein. Being a familiar team sport in many countries, the football metaphor can also function as a communication device within work teams to facilitate and promote a shared understanding of work and safety.


Safety culture Organizational culture Metaphors Team roles Creating safety Shared understanding 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Safety Science and Security GroupDelft University of TechnologyDelftNetherlands
  2. 2.Saint Mary’s UniversityHalifaxCanada

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