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“The devil’s journey”: Cargo ships’ schedules, social relations and coping strategies

“The devil’s journey”: Cargo ships’ schedules, social relations and coping strategies

Pauksztat, Birgit (2016) “The devil’s journey”: Cargo ships’ schedules, social relations and coping strategies. In: Society and the Sea, 15-16 September 2016, Greenwich Maritime Centre, University of Greenwich, London UK. (Unpublished)

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Affecting workload, daily routines and tasks, a ship’s schedule shapes life and work on board. Characteristics of ships’ schedule have also been associated with fatigue. Fatigue comes not only with high personal costs for seafarers with regard to health and well-being. It also contributes to errors and accidents at sea, with substantial financial implications for the shipping industry.

The purpose of this study is to examine seafarers’ perceptions of the consequences of ships’ schedules, and their ways of coping with demanding schedules. Particular attention will be given to effects on fatigue, and the role of social relations. Data come from interviews and informal conversations with officers and crew on cargo ships engaged in short sea shipping, mainly in northern Europe and the Mediterranean.

Whereas previous research has mostly focused on assessing the effects of selected stressors, the interviews provided a more nuanced understanding of how ships’ schedules and social interactions on board affected fatigue, and revealed the complex interrelations between ships’ schedules, institutional and organizational context, social interactions on board, and coping strategies. Further, the interviews suggested the importance of considering not only stressors, but also potential mitigating factors and resources for coping. Initial findings suggested that the ship’s schedule was not only an important stressor, but could also undermine the resources available for coping.

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Short sea liner shipping; Fatigue; Social interactions on board; Interview study
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Business
Faculty of Business > Department of Human Resources & Organisational Behaviour
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Last Modified: 12 Apr 2017 09:41

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