What does the Covid-19 crisis teach us about resilience?
Resilience is commonly understood as the ability to cope well with unexpected events, and to overcome trauma. The launch, by the President of the French Republic, of a military operation cal-led Resilience, to help combat the Covid-19 pandemic, gives us pause for thought. It is clear that the pandemic is an extraordinary illustration of the intuitive, but complex notion of resilience, and has opened up a unique opportunity for us to deepen our understanding. We can literally see it at work –or not. Moreover, we can transfer what that experience is unfolding to other domains, such as the management of industrial risk.
Indeed, safety management in at-risk industries is being shaken up by the pandemic. The dominance of health concerns is changing the weight given to production, profitabi-lity, industrial safety, occupational health and safety, the environment, etc. In the field, the need to manage the pandemic has reduced the workforce and limited on-site working. All of this is transforming and complicating the implementation of day-to-day safety practices. We need to invent new ways to manage industrial safety.
What about next time?
We need a meta-learning process. It is not a question of remembering what we did in res-ponse to the Covid-19 crisis, instead we have to remember what we did when we didn’t know what to do.
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