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Office of Research and Graduate Studies

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The goal of this research was to apply the economic concept titled Input-Output Analysis to an aviation safety concept titled Safety Management Systems (SMS). Input-Output (IO) is based upon the interrelationships of various components of an economic system and what happens to the system when one or more of those components changes. Since SMS is, by definition, a system with definable components, the research sought to determine if the interrelationships between those components could be determined and quantified. The term ‘‘marbles’’ was used to describe the activities that led to the IO-SMS matrix. Marbles was used as a metaphor for quantifying interrelationships. A team of SMS experts was assembled to collectively determine the interrelationships among the four components of SMS. Next the team determined the relative values of the elements and processes inside each component. (There are 24 discrete items—elements and processes—in SMS.) Once these values were determined and placed into a 24 6 24 matrix, IO matrix mathematics was applied to produce the IO-SMS Matrix. The SMS matrix that resulted from this experiment may be a powerful management tool that can determine the impact of any numerical input, such as an SMS survey, on the total system. It can also be used to perform ‘‘what if’’ analysis by changing the value of one element or process within the SMS. The weakness of the IO-SMS matrix is that it is highly sensitive to the original input data that define the interrelationships among the components.

Publication Title

Journal of Aviation Technology and Engineering



Purdue University College of Technology