Apollo, Challenger, and Columbia: The Challenger Syndrome and the Decline of US Organizations and Institutions / Edition 1

Apollo, Challenger, and Columbia: The Challenger Syndrome and the Decline of US Organizations and Institutions / Edition 1

by Phillip K. Tompkins, Emily V. Tompkins
     
 

ISBN-10: 1931719322

ISBN-13: 9781931719322

Pub. Date: 08/30/2004

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Tompkins (emeritus organizational communication, U. of Colorado-Boulder) traces changes in internal and external communications at the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) from its beginnings just after World War II through the breakup of the Columbia space shuttle in February 2003. Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

Overview

Tompkins (emeritus organizational communication, U. of Colorado-Boulder) traces changes in internal and external communications at the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) from its beginnings just after World War II through the breakup of the Columbia space shuttle in February 2003. Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781931719322
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
08/30/2004
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

Prefacex
Introduction and Acknowledgmentsxxi
Chapter 1The Columbia Accident1
Forecast1
The Mystery4
Debris Rains on Nacogdoches, Texas7
The Internet9
The President Speaks10
A NASA News Conference10
Houston, Texas, Loses Heroes11
Reactions at the Cape12
The Crew and Its Mission14
Possible Causes of the Disaster17
Chapter 2The Week Following: Debris, Data, and Fault Trees19
Monday, February 3, 200320
Tuesday, February 4, 200326
Wednesday, February 5, 200332
Thursday, February 6, 200334
Friday, February 7, 200338
Saturday, February 8, 200341
Chapter 3Culture and Communication in NASA47
Redding's Ideal Managerial Climate48
NASA's Culture and Climate51
Research and Testing57
In-House Technical Capability58
Hands-On Experience59
Exceptional People61
Risk and Failure62
Frontier Mentality64
Chapter 4Communication and Culture in the Marshall Space Flight Center67
A Research Opportunity at MSFC67
The Arsenal Concept70
Organizational Structure at MSFC: Mitosis71
Project Management72
Formal Versus Informal Organization74
Upward Communication as an Earthquake Prediction System78
Shepherd's Three Problems79
The Mushroom Problem81
The Monday Notes82
Monday Notes as Organizational Learning85
Automatic Responsibility87
Penetration88
A Briefing for Shepherd90
The Saturn V Control Center Problem90
Briefings and Weekly Notes for Headquarters92
Briefing for von Braun93
Staff and Board Briefing95
Saturn V Flies96
Return to MSFC96
Cultural Categories99
Research and Testing99
In-House Technical Capability99
Hands-On Experience100
Exceptional People101
Risk and Failure101
Frontier Mentality101
Open Communication102
Topoi and Tradeoffs104
Organizational Identification105
Unobtrusive Control107
Chapter 5The Challenger Accident111
Claus Jensen and No Downlink119
Feynman's Two Experiments119
The 'Challenger Syndrome'121
Diane Vaughan and The Challenger Launch Decision122
A Faustian Bargain124
Chapter 6The Mysteries of Columbia Continue129
The Avuncular Anchor130
A Changed Culture?134
E-Mail Excerpts138
O'Keefe Gets Grilled141
Ron Dittemore and Others Are Reassigned142
CAIB Adds Three New Members to Inquiry143
Groupthink?144
CAIB Hearing and a Double Meaning147
Two More Deaths147
Bordering on the Irresponsible?149
A Little Bit of an Echo150
To Scapegoat or Not151
Rescue Try 'Conceivable'156
The Wisdom of Yogi Berra156
Linda Ham Meets the Press159
Chapter 7Reading the CAIB Report: Echoes of Challenger and a Cultural Fence163
Fault Tree Analysis164
1.Solid Rocket Booster Bolt Catchers164
2.Kapton Wiring165
3.Hypergolic Fuel Spill165
4.Space Weather165
5.Asymmetric Boundary Layer Transition165
6.Training and On-Orbit Performance166
7.Payloads166
8.Willful Damage and Security166
9.Micrometeoroids and Orbital Debris Risks166
10.Foreign Object Damage Prevention166
The Mystery of NASA's Culture169
Testing Feynman's Hypothesis171
Other Communication Problems174
Organizational Causes175
Fasterbettercheaper176
The Safety Culture179
Chapter 8 of the CAIB Report180
8.1Echoes of Challenger180
8.2Failures of Foresight: Two Decision Histories and the Normalization of Deviance181
8.3System Effects: The Impact of History and Politics on Risky Work181
8.4Organization, Culture, and Unintended Consequences182
8.5History as Cause: Two Accidents182
8.6Changing NASA's Organizational System184
The Two Cultures Argument185
1.Research and Testing187
2.In-house Technical Capability187
3.Hands-on Experience188
4.Exceptional People188
5.Risk and Failure188
6.Open Communication189
7.Organizational Identification and Control190
A Footnote on Control190
Recommendations195
1.Near-Term: Return to Flight195
2.Mid-Term: Continuing to Fly195
3.Long-Term: Future Direction for the United States in Space196
Chapter 8The Challenger Syndrome and the Decline of American Organizations and Institutions: 'Speaking Truth to Power'201
'Wal-Mart Effect'212
The Golden Rule220
Notes to Chapter Eight230
Chapter 9Chicken Little, the Ostrich, and Spiderman233
The CAIB Report and the Press233
An Insider's View236
Chicken Little and the Ostrich238
The Meaning of the Situation as Influencing Behavior245
Ideal Managerial Climate246
To Scapegoat or Not247
The Two-Cultures Hypothesis249
The Historical Perspective250
Final Recommendation253
Ontological Anxiety254
Coda256
Cast of Characters261
Managers at Time of Crash of Columbia261
Columbia Astronauts (as given in CAIB)261
Debris Search Pilots (Killed in Action)261
Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB)261
Glossary of Acronyms and Technical Terms263
References271
Name Index275
Subject Index281

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