Chronic unease for safety in managers: a conceptualisation

L.S. Fruhen, R.H. Flin, R. McLeod

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


To achieve a high level of safety, managers of organisations in hazardous industries need to maintain a state of constant wariness towards the management of risks, often conceptualised as ‘chronic unease’. Despite the prevalence of this term in the literature, there is limited evidence to enable a definition or operationalisation of this concept. To develop a better understanding of chronic unease, a literature search of articles using this term was conducted. Descriptions of chronic unease from nine articles were coded resulting in the identification of five themes: pessimism, propensity to worry, vigilance, requisite imagination and flexible thinking, as the components of chronic unease. We propose a preliminary conceptualisation of chronic unease based on these attributes, which suggests that this specific type of uneasiness may be a desirable state for managers in relation to the control of risks.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)969-979
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Risk Research
Issue number8
Early online date25 Sept 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • managers
  • risk
  • safety critical industries
  • chronic unease


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