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'1966 and all that': Trends and developments in UK ergonomics during the 1960s

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The 1960s represents a key decade in the expansion of ergonomics within the UK. This paper reviews trends and developments that emerged out of the 1960s and compares these with ergonomics research and practice today. The focus in particular is on the expansion of ergonomics as a discipline within industry, as well as more specific topics, such as the emergence of areas of interest, for example, computers and technology, automation and systems ergonomics and consumer ergonomics. The account is illustrated with a detailed timeline of developments, a set of industrial case studies and the contents of important publications during the decade. A key aim of the paper is to provide the opportunity to reflect on the past and the implications this may have for future directions for ergonomics within the UK. The paper provides practitioners with an insight into the development of ergonomics in the UK during one of the most important decades of its history. This is especially relevant given the fact that in 2009 the Ergonomics Society celebrates its 60th anniversary.
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Keywords: consumer ergonomics; general ergonomics; human-machine systems; industrial ergonomics

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Human Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK 2: Bayswater Institute, London, UK

Publication date: November 1, 2009

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