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Risk Analysis Applied to the Integration of Safety and Security into Systems Design

  • 28.4.2015, 16:00 - 17:00

Svana Helen Björnsdóttir heldur “Research Proposal” fyrirlestur þriðjudaginn 28. apríl 2015, kl. 16-17 í HR stofu V102. Fyrirlesturinn verður haldinn á ensku.

Svana Helen Björnsdóttir gives a Research Proposal Presentation Tuesday April 28 2015, at 16-17 GMT in RU room V102. The presentation will be in English.


There is an increasing demand towards the design of systems with regard to safety, security, measurability and controllability of risk. Hence there is need for new approaches to risk management. Until now, different approaches have been taken in many fields and have worked well for simple systems. With the rapid technical development and progress in the exploitation of information technology it has become possible to develop increasingly complex systems and solutions for operational activities. Diversity is steadily growing. There is also a growing need for interoperation of different systems, even systems controlled by different bodies. Flexibility in functionality, the possibility of interconnection and interoperability, alongside higher demands for reliability, quality, safety, security and speed means that safety and security have to be designed into systems in a more reliable way than hitherto. Systems are often composed of mechanical, electrical, and software components – the last currently being the fastest evolving component. As a response to these new demands, new areas have been formed in the fields of engineering, such as systems safety engineering. Along with this development, risk analysis and risk management is now gaining importance as basic elements and guidelines of good design.

The aim of the thesis is to study risk analysis methodologies in different fields and examine their effectiveness, compare them and to seek a general risk analysis methodology that can be used in many different disciplines for integrating safety and security into systems design. This is done by performing six case studies in different fields of application. It is also the purpose of the research to investigate whether the new STAMP causality model (Systems-Theoretic Accident Model and Processes), introduced by Professor Nancy Leveson at MIT, can be used to identify and analyze risk with the aim of changing system safety and security design from preventing failures to enforcing behavioral safety and security constraints. In the STAMP model safety is reformulated as a control problem rather than a reliability problem.

Thesis Committee:

  • Dr. Páll Jensson, Professor and Head of Department of Financial Engineering and Engineering Management at Reykjavik University, School of Science and Engineering.
  • Dr. Nancy Leveson, Professor of Aeronautics, Astronautics and Engineering Systems at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
  • Dr. Þorgeir Pálsson, Professor of Air Navigation Technology at Reykjavik University, School of Science and Engineering.
  • Dr. Robert Jan de Boer, Professor of Aviation Engineering at the Amsterdam University of Applied Science (Hogeschool van Amsterdam).

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