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.
- safety critical industries
- chronic unease