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NASA Needs A Risk Manager

In investigating the tragic loss of the Columbia Space Shuttle, an independent review board blamed not only the failings of the technology involved, but more ominously, they cited the shortcomings of the people at NASA and their organizational culture.

The panel issued a scathing critique that described NASA as an agency that violated most of the basic tenets of sound risk management. NASA failed to remain diligent in investigating every potential risk and in proactively mitigating them. NASA also created an atmosphere in which people who suspected potential safety problems felt pressure from peers and managers to keep their doubts to themselves.

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