Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


44th Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2018

Event Details

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Symposium #344
CE Offered: BACB
Translational Research Through Partnerships With Industry and Communities to Impact Safety
Sunday, May 27, 2018
5:00 PM–6:50 PM
Marriott Marquis, Marina Ballroom E
Area: OBM/CSS; Domain: Translational
Chair: Timothy D. Ludwig (Appalachian State University)
Discussant: Timothy D. Ludwig (Appalachian State University)
CE Instructor: Timothy D. Ludwig, Ph.D.

The effective and sustained application of behavior analysis to safety is characterized by intervening on active response classes for both personal protection and the protection of others in industry and communities. Behavioral safety systems in these contexts rely on tactics discovered through translational research including direct behavioral observation, data collection, and analyses paired with prompts, social contingencies in the form of feedback, and systemic environmental change. Behavior analysis has been able to translate its research in safety into effective programmatic processes through the involvement of industry and community partners. In this symposium Wirth & Ludwig introduce the behavioral standards through which the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies (CCBS) Commission on Behavioral Safety Accreditation uses as criterion for partnerships in industry documenting their best translational practices. Hebein, Alavosius, & Houmanfar analyse 45 field site assessments by the CCBS Commission using Gilbert's Behavioral Engineering framework. Dagen discusses the application of behavior analysis in catastrophic incident prevention in high-hazard industries. Finally, Van Houten will explore how the motivating operation to increase acceptance and sustain changes in the safety culture of a community.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Behavioral Engineering, Behavioral Safety, Motivating Operation, Translational Research
Target Audience:

Behavior Analysts interested in translational research in the real world

Learning Objectives: Understand how the principles of behavior analysis can be translated into real world application Learn to apply Gilbert's Behavioral Engineering Model Link Motivating Operations to popular descriptions of safety culture

Establishing a Strong Safety Culture Through Accredited Behavioral Safety Programs

(Service Delivery)
OLIVER WIRTH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), Timothy D. Ludwig (Appalachian State University)

Safety culture and climate have become important concepts for addressing occupational injuries and fatalities, and they are almost always cited as important factors responsible for work-related injuries, fatalities, and industrial disasters. Most definitions of safety culture refer to individual and group values, attitudes, perceptions, competencies, and patterns of behavior that relate to an organization's commitment to health and safety. These involve several factors, including management decision making, organizational safety norms and expectations, safety practices, policies, and procedures that together serve to communicate organizational commitment to safety. Recently, the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies Commission for Behavioral Safety Accreditation has revised its standards used as criterion for their assessments. The new standards are organized across ten different focus areas that span the behavioral processes and organizational features that are necessary to sustained and effective safety program. This presentation will show how an empirically effective and comprehensive behavioral safety program, as espoused by the CCBS's accreditation standards, fulfills many of the purported organizational requirements for establishing a strong, positive safety culture while demonstrating sustained reduction in injuries.


Are We Checking All the Boxes? Accreditation Recommendations Guide Behavioral Safety System Interventions

(Applied Research)
CHRISTOPHER HEBEIN (University of Nevada, Reno), Mark P. Alavosius (Praxis2LLC), Ramona Houmanfar (University of Nevada, Reno)

The Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies (CCBS) has accredited behavioral safety programs since 2003 completing 45+ site assessments. Via accreditation, CCBS commissioners guide organizations toward safer systems. Each site assessment is a case study demonstrating the impact of safety behavior management with recommendation to enhance results. The CCBS accreditation process encourages and shapes safety best-practices within multiple industries. Accreditation entails analysis of principles of behavior and interlocking contingencies within effective behavioral safety systems that control deviation from safety standards and result in industry leading safety results. Assessments offer insight to science-based methods applied by safety managers within high performance sites. One coherent methodology to assess sources of behavioral variation and guide system interventions within organization comes from Thomas Gilbert's book Human Competence, first published in 1978. Gilbert's (1978) behavior engineering model, a 6-box matrix designed to focus analysis on "improvements in behavior efficiency" within organizations provides a framework to inventory the CCBS safety accreditation recommendations provided since 2003. A meta-analysis of accreditation recommendations reported by CCBS commissioners across 45 site assessments using the framework of Gilbert's behavior engineering model provides data to illustrate evolution of the CCBS accreditation process and reveal safety trends emerging in accredited organizations.


Enhancing Major Accident Prevention Methods With Behavioral Science


The impacts of catastrophic incidents are often felt on a global scale. For example, many people are familiar with high-profile catastrophic incidents such as Chernobyl, Space Shuttle Columbia, and Deepwater Horizon. The interdisciplinary efforts of countless professionals have significantly reduced the likelihood of catastrophic incidents in many industries (e.g., aviation). Behavioral science has an opportunity to make an important contribution in further driving down the likelihood of these incidents. This talk will explore behavior analysis in the context of a global business operating in a high-hazard industry. Specific areas of focus will include catastrophic incident prevention methods, the human element of process safety management, and leadership development in dangerous contexts. Suggestions will be made for applying our science to the global challenge of understanding and preventing catastrophic incidents in high-hazard industries.


CANCELED: Changing the Safety Culture: The Importance of the Motivating Operation

(Applied Research)
RON VAN HOUTEN (Western Michigan University)

This talk will explore how the motivating operation plays a major role in produces robust changes in the safety culture of a community. Studies on the use of packages to used to change driving behavior on a citywide basis will be presented. Some of the issues that will be addressed are: The importance of setting up motivating operations to increase acceptance and sustain the change; the importance of using behavior tools to influence social norming; the use of feedback systems and prompting system timed to prompt behavior change at the time it needs to occur; the use of video modeling to maintain safety skills; and the use of technology to change behavior.




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