Message from the Executive Committee

Welcome to the newly re-created and updated IEA website!

We are very fortunate to announce this website launch – an important positive accomplishment for IEA. We invite all visitors to navigate through the site and give us constructive feedback.

During this unfortunate time, IEA like everyone else, is in the midst of a global pandemic. On behalf of the IEA Officers and Executive Committee members, we would like to convey our full support and our hope that you and your families and colleagues are safe and healthy.  HF/E specialists around the world are working for a resolution to this catastrophic world situation.

In particular, HF/E experts working in healthcare and patient safety make a difference by supporting the clinicians at the sharp end. We give many thanks for their contributions to community engagement, supporting medical directions in training and giving information to healthcare operators, and supporting clinical risk managers in healthcare settings to promote priority activities. Clinical risk managers support the emergency specifically through activities such as: collecting reports related to the management of critical issues relevant to the emergency in order to help provide an immediate response and to preserve organizational memory; providing proactive assessments of risks for patients and operators; continuously updating procedures for quality and safety systems; maintaining active involvement in training and disseminating information relating to the use of PPEs, how to put them on and remove them; continuously monitoring for correct application of infection prevention practices such as hand washing; and developing strategies and tools for communication to operators, patients and citizens.

The COVID-19 crisis may be long-lasting; therefore, there is a need to face today’s situation with awareness and unity, with an eye to the future. It is really important to give maximum transparency to what we are doing in the health services and to maintain consistency between internal and public communications, in order to keep the morale of the workers high and to preserve the public’s confidence in health care institutions. Safety comes first, especially in times of crisis. This crisis can also be a great opportunity to learn, to understand our points of strength and our weak points in managing unexpected crises as HF/E specialists in service of the public health.

Watch IEA Headlines on this Home page and our COVID-19 Resources page for examples of how HF/E societies in many regions are contributing to the management of HF/E issues during the COVID-19 situation.


Our Initiatives and Projects

IEA governance has been directly impacted by COVID-19.  Meetings of the Executive Committee and the Council have been cancelled due to travel restrictions.  We hope to re-schedule the 2020 IEA Council meeting – however the time and place are moving targets, as we do not know when the virus will abate and travel restrictions will be lifted.  We have some proposals for Fall, 2020, and are waiting to get a better evaluation of their feasibility over the next month or so.

IEA is participating in several global initiatives related to HF/E.  As part of IEA’s role as an official Non-State Actor with the World Health Organization, we represented the human factors/ergonomics perspective at a three-day global consultation to kick off development of the Global Patient Safety Action Plan for “A Decade of Patient Safety: 2020-2030.”  The plan is a commitment from WHO, international health agencies, and Member States to organize and roll out definitive action to reduce the overall burden of patient harm due to unsafe healthcare and will be based on the guiding principles of equity, sustainability, and accountability.

IEA worked with the International Labour Organization (ILO) to develop a collaborative document outlining Principles and Guidelines for HF/E Design and Management of Work Systems.  The draft document highlights the importance of HF/E in work systems. Download it here.

IEA is on the Advisory Board for BeyondWork 2020, a European Conference on Labour Research hosted by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The conference will be held 21-22 October, 2020, in Bonn, Germany.  IEA representatives will contribute sessions on Health and Prevention, Networks at Work, Humans and Machines, and Regional and Global Change.

Thanks to the efforts of IEA members, we are creating a global community that can make significant changes in the world.  We hope to develop new collaborations and projects with our member societies to build a sustainable world for our future generations.

We wish you safety, happiness, and, especially, good health in 2020.




Kathleen Mosier, Sara Albolino, and Jose Orlando Gomes

IEA Officers on behalf of the IEA Executive Committee


Human Factors/Ergonomics is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements.

It is the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance.