You are required to write a Research Proposal describing a project that you could reasonably undertake and which would satisfy the requirements of a research dissertation in the future. The proposal must cover the research problem, literature review, and the methodology to be used in addressing this problem, including a sampling plan where appropriate as well as an appreciation of ethical issues associated with the conduct of the research. Significance and implications as well as a timeline for completion are also part of the Proposal.
Change management is a continuous process through which, an organization adapts itself to the external environment and manages the internal resistance in the organization, to align itself with the change. Aviation industry is very much prone to the changes in the existing systems, programmes, services and products and equipments, contraction and expansion. The air traffic management system uses functional systems, which manage the air traffic and thus, any alterations in these functional systems need to be subjected to risk assessment and formal evaluation (Skybrary, 2018). The research discusses the role of managers in managing the change in Air Traffic Control System. Managers have the sole responsibility to figure out the problems associated with the safety of passengers and aircraft and find reliable solutions for it. Managers have a great role to play in change management, as they are directly in contact with the employees and have both potential as well as the authority, to influence and coach the employees through the change process. The research aims to find out the problems related to Air Traffic Control faced by managers and what management techniques and methods can be used to overcome these issues. The major issues related to Air Traffic Control system are associated with the human factors such as ability, perception and performance (Teperi & Lepp?nen, Managers’ conceptions regarding human factors in air traffic management and in airport operations, 2011). Other factors which will be further analyzed in the due course of research include the safety culture in an organization, human factors and a few other factors which influence the role of managers in managing the air traffic.
The aim of this research is to evaluate the role of managers in enactment of change management in the ATC system. This research aims to highlight the problems which are faced by the management in implementing the changes in the aviation industry and how these problems can be solved effectively. Most of the changes are aimed at ensuring the safety of passengers in an aircraft (Heil, 2017). This is the most important aspect of the aviation industry, as the safety of the passengers is the primary area of consideration for the aviation industry. There have been a few researches which describe the role played by the managers in change management implementation in the Air Traffic Control system (ATC). To minimize the incidents related to it, there is a need for developing a framework related to ATC system, which must be followed by the managers and the staff members of the aviation industry. The research will fulfill the aims of the research using both the primary and secondary research approaches.
- What are the major human factors which have a greater impact on the performance of the Air Traffic Control system?
- How does the safety culture responsible for fatal accidents as well as minor incidents in the Aircraft?
- How has the increasing Air Tra?c proved to be a reason of peak obstruction in particular areas and has led to decreased availability of the parking spaces for the outbound / inbound traffic?
There has been a limited research in this space but, the following literature review gives a clear picture of the effects of human factors and the safety culture in the aviation industry, in ensuring the safety of the passengers and how do they help the managers in organizations to manage the changes in the ATC System.
Impact of human factors on managers’ conceptions regarding the management of air traffic
According to Teperi and Leppanen (2011), the role of the human factors in managing and creating safety measures in complex systems has been a topic of debate among the researchers. The aim of their study was to check and evaluate the role of the human factors in creation of safety in the aviation industry. They also analyzed the impact of the human factors in shaping the perceptions of the managers regarding the management of the air traffic and the airport operations. For conducting this study, they targeted two manager groups, consisting of middle and higher management as subjects, as they have a major role in developing the culture in an organization. The managers belonged to three operational departments or wings, including procedural air traffic control department, radar wing dealing with heavy traffic and combined military and civil traffics. They interviewed these managers and found out that all the managers had vague and disconnected opinions about the human factors. They also lacked a strategy or vision regarding human factors and their role in determining the safety of the services. The authors have also given proposals related to formulation of the organizational structures, which support effective realization of the human factors (Teperi & Lepp?nen, Managers’ conceptions regarding human factors in air traffic management and in airport operations, 2011).
Rogninn and Blanqurt in 2001 conducted air-traffic control field studies to analyze the impact of human factors such as human communication, system dependability and mutual awareness on the occurrence of the unexpected events. They said that the dependability of the critical and the complex systems relies on human ability in terms of handling these events. They conducted the ergonomics field study of the activities related to the air traffic control. They specifically studied the communication method and efficiency within the teams of managers and controllers. The communication allowed the operators to maintain mutual awareness. The research signifies the importance of the human communication in maintaining mutual awareness and thus, effective communication ensures the safety of the passengers. Thus, according to the authors, the human communication mustbe improved to maintain coordination among the managers and the employees, so that the security of the company can be maintained (Rognin & Blanquart, 2001). It was also proved by Cekan and his colleagues through their research in 2016 that the effective communication between a manager and the Air traffic controller is one of the major determining safety factors in the aviation industry. The communication must be based on the information precision, mutual reliance and accuracy between the words exchanged between the two parties (?ekan, Hovanec, & Sabo, 2016).
Tepri and his colleagues in 2015 conducted a study for analyzing the application of the new human factorstool in an organization, functioning in the field of air traffic management. The main aim of their research was to analyze the impact of the easy-to-use human factors (HF) tool on an air traffic management company in ensuring critical safety of the passengers. For this, the authors analyzed the negative and positive causal factors of more than 3163 incidents that occurred between 2008 and 2010 in 27 ATC units the HF tool. They analyzed the experiences of the users about the HF tool using the questionnaires consisting of the open- ended questions. The results of their research suggested that the use of the HF tool varied from year to year and unit to unit. It assisted the ATC units in analyzing both the negative and positive causal factors of the incidents that happened, and allowed the operators of ATC in learning about the new concept of ATC. The major benefits of the HF tool were identified to be user friendliness, congruence of the contents of the tool and its visuality. For using this tool effectively, the users need to be trained and instructed well. It must be included as one of the core processes of the ATC reporting system. The improvement in the HF competence in the organization will improve the work and operations of ATC, its safety issues and its reporting system(Teperi, Lepp?nen, & Norros, 2015).
Role of managers in managing the air traffic
Change and evolution are the major factors which may lead to improvement in the operationsof organizations and managing those changes is the sole responsibility of the managers along with employing those changes successfully in the organizations. The managers are the biggest supporters of any change in the organization, and their efforts are really appreciated while managing and implementing those changes successfully in the organization. The managers are closest to the employees and thus, they are the primary people who can convince them as well as assist them throughout the process of change in the organizational operations. In many cases, the changes impact the positions of the employees. They need to communicate well with the employees and tell them the importance of the change. In the aviation industry, most of the changes are in alignment with the passenger safety and thus, the managers are responsible for telling the employees about the changes and how they comply with the vision and mission of the organization. They are responsible for implying the changes successfully within the organization (Ionescu, Meruta, & Dragomiroiu, 2014).
One of the major roles of the managers is to manage the performance of the air traffic controllers, which in turn, will improve the efficiency of the organization to manage the air traffic. Shafique (2014) conducted a research in this space. He identified the factors which can pose negative effect on the operational performance of ATCOs all across the world and the poor performance of the air traffic controllers is one of them. Calculation of their impact on the security of the aircrafts is necessary for the expeditious flow of the air traffic. He suggested an air traffic model which, if followed by the air traffic controllers, could lead to enhanced working capability of ACTOs. The model included the methodologieswhich could be adopted by organizations to identify the factors which enhance the air traffic and what remedial measures can be takenfor eradicating the issues related to these factors (Shafique, 2014).
Impact of secure culture in managing the air traffic
Finke and his colleagues in 2013 conducted their research to find the effective ways in order to enhance the security of the surveillance of the aircrafts in the air traffic control system of the next generation. According to them, the air traffic control system of the US relies heavily on the legacy systems which the air traffic capacity in an artificial manner. With increasing demand in the air transportation every year, the Federal Aviation Administration of the US introduced the NextGen (Next Generation) upgrades for modernizing the ATC systems and Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) is one of the main components of this upgrade system. It enables the aircraft to generate digital messages containing the GPS coordinates of the aircrafts. This component provides improved efficiency and accuracy of surveillance for the aircraft safety. The authors have tried to evaluate the issues with the current legacy systems used in the air traffic control. The authors also discussed the role of FFX algorithm and format-preserving encryption in the NextGen ATC system and have used message entropy as the metric to analyze the message input (Finke, Butts, Mills, & Grimaila, 2013).
Kistan and his colleagues in 2017 provided an evolutionary outlook of the latest techniques related to the air traffic flow management. According to them, Air Traffic Flow Management (ATFM) has become a major issue for the aviation related organizations in the recent years, due to the dense traffic operations. This increased traffic in the specific locations has led to congestion. Increasing environmentalawareness among the aviation organizations, along with the economic drivers, has created interest of the organizations in ATFM and many of the official organizations such as IATA, CANSO, the Eurocontrol, FAA and ICAO have been organizing certain conferences for resolving the problems related to congestion of the air traffic at the determined locations. Many countries all across the world have adopted the AFTM acquisitions and they have procured the AFTM systems for managing the air traffic. These systems assist the managers of the organizations to improve their methods of communication, air traffic management and surveillance, navigation and Avionics evolution. The authors said that the companies need to improve the AFTM technology further, as it has helped the companies in certain limit and has not given results as per the expectations. Thus, an evolutionary approach needs to be adopted to improve this technology or develop new and better technologies to manage the air traffic, as it has been one of the major issues pertaining to the environmental degradation and the security of the passengers (Kistan, Gardi, Sabatini, Ramasamy, & Batuwangala, 2017).
On the basis of the literature review, the following research hypotheses have been formulated-
Hypothesis 1: The issues concerned with the role of human factors have a greater impact on the performance of the Air Traffic Control system.
Hypothesis 2: Safety culture is one of the main reasons for fatal accidents as well as minor incidents in the Aircraft.
Hypothesis 3: The increasing number in Air Tra?c has made peak obstruction in the speci?c areas with the availability of limited parking space for inbound/outbound aircraft.
Research methodologyResearch approach
The research approach that has been adopted for this research includes both primary and secondary research approaches. The primary research includes both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies. The secondary research, on the other hand, will be conducted by the extensive study of the previously established literature in the space. The quantitative approach will be adopted to collect data from a large number of population. It is considered to be one of the most effective means to collect the data, as it allows the researchers to collect the data from a large number of respondents and hence, the data obtained through it is highly generalized and represents all the sections of the employees equally (Baron & Kenny, 2009).
In this research a purposive sampling will be used for selecting the respondents of the research. (Lavrakas, 2008). The focus will be on randomly selecting the male and female respondents for the study including both the managers and the staff. Table 1 shows the description of the respondents. (Shukla, 2017). The responses will be collected from two Airlines Company in the country. These airlines will be Ansett Airlines and Virgin Australia Airlines. These airlines have a large fleet of aircrafts and thus, their employees will be able to explain the problem of ATC in a descriptive manner.
Quantitative research will be done with the help of survey instrument. Survey is considered to be a highly effective method for collecting the data from a large population. It is cheap and efficient method of collecting data. The survey will be conducted through questionnaire consisting of a few close-ended questions. The questionnaire developed will contain the questions that will focus on determining the factors that can affect the overall performance of Air Traffic Control system, determining the safety culture along with the peak obstruction in the parking spaces. Total of 14 questionnaires will be completed for obtaining the findings of research. The responses of the respondents will be marked on the five-point Likert scale. The responses recorded on the scale will be analyzed using the computer-based statistical tools. In addition, graphical analysis will also be used to analyze the responses of the respondents. It allows the researchers in getting the generalized opinion regarding the research variables (Sekaran & Bougie, 2016).
Qualitative research will be conducted using the interviews. The interviews provide a detailed analysis about the research topics from the point of view of the higher managers. Qualitative research is conducted when the number of respondents is less. (Abawi, 2017).The interviews will be conducted in two layers- the structured interviews will be conducted using the survey forms, whereas, the open interviews will be conducted through open-ended questions, where the notes will be taken while talking to the respondents. (Addo & Eboh, 2015). The main topics which will be included in the interview questions will be role of managers in managing the change in the Air Traffic Control System, and how the human factors and the security factors influence the air traffic management. It will analyze the ways in which security of the passengers be improved through the newly implemented security measures (Sekaran & Bougie, 2016).
The following table describes the number and type of participants of the research-
Types of participants
Table1: No. of participants for Interviews and Questionnaire
For this research, a total of 14 managers and employees of the aviation organization will be approached and they will be provided with questionnaires to answer the questions related to the research variable. They will also be asked open-ended questions related to the research variables.
The major limitations of the research will be that the managers included for the interviews and questionnaires do not cover all the concerned departments. Only two managerial groups have been identified for this research. (Miranda, 2015) If the number of group had been more, the data would have been more generalized, wider and reliable. (Queir?s, Faria, & Almeida, 2017) Only three research hypotheses have been formulated and hence, the number of variables for the research is restricted. The number of respondents for the research are also very less. This presents limited data and information regarding the research topic. The research also did not signify the time period which it is considering. This will lead to the random generation of the results. (Rahi, 2017).
Significance and scope of the study
The study will analyze the role of managers in the aviation organizations in managing the changes. The research deals with the analysis of the impact of safety culture and the HF in managing the air traffic in specific areas. The research will allow the managers of this industry, to check whether the current strategies followed by them in change management are efficient enough and how can they be modified to manage the changes in a better way. The research also analyzes the current air traffic control measures and explains what new modifications that can be used in making the current practices better. It also suggests better practices which can be adopted to improve the efficiency of the air traffic management. The future researchers can conduct the research indifferent countries and with more number of respondents to get a better analysis of the data.
Keeping the research ethics in mind, the name of the respondents will be kept anonymous so that their reputation and equation with the senior authorities do not get disturbed. The data collected through the research will be kept in a password protected laptop so that it cannot be accessed easily by any anonymous person. The required permissions will be taken from the respective authorities for the conducting the research. The consent forms will be given to the participants of the research, which they will need to sign before participating in the research. The respondents will not be forced to take part in the research and will be participating in the process with their proper consent (Zikmund, Babin, Carr, & Griffin, 2013).
· Background research of the topic
· Determination of research objectives
· Framing research questions
· Significance of research
October 2018 to first week of November
· Collecting data about all the three research variables
Second week of November till the end of November
· Determination of research methodology
· Taking permissions from the authorities about data collection
· Designing the survey questionnaire
· Conducting the interviews
· Recording the results
The entire month of December
Analysis to be undertaken
· Analysis of the results using statistical tools
· Interview analysis
· Analysis of literature Review
First and second week of January
Results and conclusion
· Discussion of the results of interview and survey
· Validation of the results of primary literature with the secondary literature
· Discussing the conclusion
Third week of January to first week of February
Compilation of the report
By the end of February
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