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A citation that kicks

The work of Linköping University’s Charles Woolfson is featured for a second time this year in a leading US paper. This time it’s the Wall Street Journal (‘Our Thirst for Oil: A Deeper Dive’ by Michael Totty, 18 October).

His co-authored volume published in the mid-nineties is a comprehensive study of problems of safety in the offshore oil industry which took nearly a decade of research. It has gained renewed relevance in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

Woolfson and his colleagues’ analysis of what is still the world’s worst offshore disaster in terms of human fatalities, the explosion on the Piper Alpha oil rig platform killing 167 men, is recommended by Professor Tyler Priest, a leading US business historian based at Houston University, as suggesting several important lessons for contemporary events, in particular ‘the story of how a new, albeit diluted, safety regime came about in the U.K. North Sea offers clues about what we might expect in the Gulf’.

Woolfson who is currently a member of Linköping’s REMESO Institute will be using this research as case study material in new course teaching for ‘Perspectives in Human Resource Management’ due to be delivered next Spring at the university. Meantime, oil industry executives have some bed-time reading to do as they absorb the lessons contained in Woolfson et al’s 600-page forensic examination of a previous failure of corporate social responsibility.


Therese Winder 2010-10-27




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Last updated: 2010-10-27