Workshop: Resilience Markers Framework: Identifying resilience strategies at the individual and team level


Resilience Engineering caught our imagination as something exciting and interesting to research just over 5 years ago. However, we found it challenging to link some of the abstract ideas with resilience in practice: how could we identify resilience behaviour? what does it look like? what value do we get once we have identified it? This workshop will bring participants closer to realising some of these questions.

We will introduce participants to the Resilience Markers Framework and the conceptual apparatus and examples that come with this to help people to try to identify resilience strategies in practice. We will get participants to engage with categorising real resilience behaviours and invite them to bring their own examples to share and discuss. We will propose how resilience strategies might be shared within and across domains to make systems more resilient.

Workshop description:

In this workshop we will move from engaging with examples of everyday resilience (e.g. setting an alarm to remind you when your eggs are boiled) to identifying and documenting resilience strategies in more safety-critical systems (e.g. placing a paper clip in the procedures of a nuclear power plant to remember where an important value is). Along the way we will introduce participants to concepts and the structure of the Resilience Markers Framework to help think about these issues. The workshop will include two activities to help bring these ideas to life – please see preparatory work.

Workshop Goal:

To learn how to apply the Resilience Markers Framework (including its structure, concepts and examples) to help identify and document resilience strategies in practice.

Workshop Presenters:

Dominic Furniss and Jonathan Back have published multiple papers on the theme of resilience over the past five years – the fruits of which will be presented at this workshop. Their work focuses on developing supportive tools and concepts to help identify resilience in practice.

Dominic Furniss is a postdoctoral researcher at University College London working on CHI+MED. He is interested in the performance of socio-technical systems and the interactions between people and technology. He has led work on the Resilience Markers Framework, Errordiary and presented work on both to academic and public audiences.

Jonathan Back is a postdoctoral researcher at University College London working on CHI+MED. He is interested in understanding human error associated with the use of medical devices. He is concerned with aggregating knowledge of resilience across safety-critical domains; identifying workarounds developed to avoid error; and designing controlled experiments, which enable systematic patterns of error to be predicted.

Preparatory work:

1) Please browse and post examples to errordiary (human error) and rsdiary (resilience strategies). We will use these and other people’s examples to generate categories of resilience strategies in the workshop. You can read more about this work here.

2) Please bring interesting examples of resilience from your workplace that you would be interested to talk about at the workshop. We will see how they fit the Resilience Markers Framework.


Dominic and Jonathan are both funded by CHI+MED: EP/G059063/1. This is an EPSRC funded project that seeks to make medical devices safer and easier to use.


Furniss, D., Back, J. & Blandford, A. Cognitive Resilience: Can we use Twitter to make strategies more tangible? Proc. ECCE 2012.

Furniss, D., Back, J. & Blandford, A. (2011). Unwritten Rules for Safety and Performance in an Oncology Day Care Unit: Testing the Resilience Markers Framework. Proc. Fourth Resilience Engineering Symposium.

Furniss, D., Back, J., Blandford, A., Hildebrandt, M. & Broberg, H. (2011). A Resilience Markers Framework for Small Teams. Reliability Engineering and System Safety, 96 (1), p2-10.DOI:10.1016/j.ress.2010.06.025

Furniss, D., Back, J. & Blandford, A. (2010). Resilience in Emergency Medical Dispatch: Big R and little rProc. Workshop on Interactive Systems in Healthcare (with CHI2010)

Back, J. Furniss, D. Hildebrandt, M. & Blandford, A. (2008). Resilience Markers for Safer Systems and Organisations. Proc. of SafeComp 2008.