Last week, Think ATM Consultant, James Lewis took part in the first stage of the  MIT virtual 2020 STAMP Workshop which will continue over the next two weeks.

STAMP is a new causality model that is based on systems theory. It focuses on systems as a whole rather than as separate parts and was developed to provide a more powerful way to deal with complexity.

STPA (System-Theoretic Process Analysis) and CAST (Causal Analysis based on System Theory) are techniques based on the STAMP methodology. STPA assumes accidents can be caused by unsafe interactions of system components as well as component failures. It has the advantage that it can be used to analyse very complex systems, can be used early on in concept analysis and includes software and human operators in the analysis. CAST is similar to STPA but it is designed to be applied specifically to accident analysis. It is a more systematic approach that will produce a diverse set of causal factors that need to be controlled to prevent further loses.


Of the five workshops James has already attended so far, he said:

“The first week of this workshop delivered a set of short tutorials to introduce STAMP, STPA, CAST and related techniques. The workshop has been very insightful so far and a lot of the issues that the STAMP methodology attempts to address are ones that I have encountered. The tutorials so far have been very engaging and there is a wide pool of participants from around the world and from lots of different industries. I am therefore looking forward to the next couple of weeks which will involve organisations from around the world sharing their experiences with these techniques through presentations, panels, and poster sessions.”

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