Plenty of Evidence of HF/E Impact The Department of Defense, for example, has long paid attention to the importance of matching the characteristics, capabilities, and limitations of users with the design of systems, selection
of personnel, and development of training programs. In fact, the history of the HF/E field in this country has its roots in the events surrounding World Wars I and II.
A couple of years ago at the American Telemedicine Association meeting, the keynote speaker was General James Peake, then Surgeon General of the Army. The entire theme of his presentation was “It’s all about the user.” That level of recognition by a high-ranking officer says to me that the importance of human
factors/ergonomics is being recognized. It is also clear that a wide range of government organizations worldwide have recognized the importance of HF/E to their mission.
Here are a few examples to illustrate my point:
• The Federal Aviation Administration has long recognized the
importance of HF/E and has well-established processes and
guidelines in place. It has a Human Factors Research and Engineering
• The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has a human factors
program plan that grew out of the Three Mile Island incident.