Juan Antonio Torrecilla-García1 , Mª del Carmen Pardo-Ferreira1 and Juan Carlos Rubio-Romero1

1 Dpto. de Organización de Empresas. Escuela de Ingenierías. Universidad de Málaga. C/ Dr. Ortiz Ramos S/N, 29071 Málaga (Spain).


Keywords: Cognitive Ergonomics, Industry 4.0, innovation, human-centred approach, occupational health and safety.

1. Introduction

The close relation between Production´s Organization and Processes, and Data Management within the Industry 4.0 has direct impact on the internal factory processes on all functional levels [1,2]. Industry 4.0 is gaining relevance among manufacturing systems focused on efficiency and data-based decision-making processes within the core of manufacturing companies [3,4]. Hence, new emergent opportunities of technology and human-machine interaction innovation arise in face of new strategic and operational implementations [5,6,7]. In parallel, the Cognitive Ergonomics increases its relevance within the Occupational Health and Safety strategies in all types of manufacturing companies but in particular, in highly digitalized Industry 4.0 organizations [8,9]. The conditions of industrial 4.0 plants and environments will impact directly on productivity and efficiency of workers. Due to the human-machine interactions´ and data display devices´ increase the necessity of new approaches to the Cognitive Ergonomics is required. It rises the challenge of delimit the role of human operator of all integrated and digital interfaces [10].

2. Objectives

The main objective of this work is to provide a prospective revision and exploratory approximation to Cognitive Ergonomics in Industry 4.0 as a launching platform for new innovative development based on human-centred scope at multi-process and multi-actor industrial systems.  As well as this research aims to develop overall introductory outline of Areas of Human-centred Innovations related to Cognitive Ergonomics Perspective of Industry 4.0.

3. Methods

This work has carried out the scoping review of concepts of Cognitive Ergonomics in Industry 4.0. The prospective analysis and exploratory study of human-centred areas to enhance innovations in the area of Cognitive Ergonomics in Industry 4.0 has been conducted applying the Research through Design (RtD) method.

4. Results

The key driver of Industry 4.0 is technology implementation impacting directly on  human performance within the smart factory. The strategic changes embedded in the Industry 4.0 implementation are focused on the corresponding evolution of the organizational culture and management style. Thus, manufacturing systems are safety-critical environments for workers, especially the plant operators. However, in the highly interconnected systems as Industry 4.0, the high level of attentiveness and mental workload implies a wider range of risks: system failures, more frequent maintenance breaks, resources wasted, human-machine gaps. Hence, it increasingly becomes a key strategic necessity for Industry 4.0 organizations to assess mental workload in order to reduce or avoid high cognitive load imposed on the operator. The Industry 4.0 components (technologies and interrelations) are causes of the mayor cognitive workload but also, they can turn into opportunities´ field to innovate from person-centred perspective. The 8 integrative areas of opportunities have been described in relation to principal Industry 4.0 technologies and in the scope of Human-centred Innovation Opportunities.

5. Conclusions

The Cognitive Ergonomics present the increasing potential to enhance innovations within the Industry 4.0 paradigm. The emergent technologies of Industry 4.0 may become launching factors for design and development of specific solutions related to the cognitive risks and prevention management. The evaluation of the human factors in Industry 4.0 environments, makes feasible the establishment of mainframes of persons´ interaction with complex machine and digital systems. The human-centred innovations within the internal industry environments will also in-depth adaptations in firms’ business models or even the creation of new ones.


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Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Industrial Management and XXV Congreso de Ingeniería de Organización Copyright © by (Eds.) José Manuel Galán; Silvia Díaz-de la Fuente; Carlos Alonso de Armiño Pérez; Roberto Alcalde Delgado; Juan José Lavios Villahoz; Álvaro Herrero Cosío; Miguel Ángel Manzanedo del Campo; and Ricardo del Olmo Martínez is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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