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The most relevant working contexts of interest to Cognition, Technology and Work are those where the impact of modern technologies on people at work is particularly important for the users involved as well as for the effects on the environment and plants. Modern society has come to depend on the safe and efficient functioning of a multitude of technological systems as diverse as industrial production, transportation, communication, supply of energy, information and materials, health and finance. In particular, the working contexts where such impact is most relevant are, amongst others:
- aviation, rail, maritime and road systems
- medical and hospital environments
- energy production and nuclear power plants
- household and social contexts
- plus other contexts where popular technology is being constantly utilized for everyday activities.
The journal also studies how “operators” interact with technologies, such as pilots, drivers, plant and traffic controllers, maintenance engineers, doctors, and nurses, etc. while also including the users affected by the systems, such as passengers, patients and people in general.
Human work has irreversibly become work with technology and the nature of work has changed to make the role of human cognition more important. In the most affected environments, the human component is relevant both for the interactions of humans with control systems and for the effects that these interactions may have on the general public at large.
People who work with technology are tightly coupled with it and must come to terms with the complexity of the socio-technical environment in order to ensure that their work is effective, safe and efficient.
Consequently, understanding and analyzing the joint functioning of people and socio-technical development, operation and maintenance systems, is the first key motivation of the studies proposed by CTW. This requires a multi-disciplinary approach, which combines the analysis of individuals with the study of technology and organizations.
The second relevant motivation of CTW is that methods and methodologies proposed and applied in field studies must be able to be reproduced and implemented by readers in order to be really effective and useful. Therefore, the peculiarity of combining consolidated theoretical frameworks, with relevant implementations in real working contexts, and the assessment of results is essential for reaching the impact necessary to maintain the Journal at the edge of applied research and practical implementation that represent the major aim of CTW.