Document Type


Publication Date



The aviation industry is recognizing that flight crews routinely contribute to system safety in ways that go beyond adherence to standard operating procedures (SOPs). Our research goals were to explore a) whether a survey could shed light on pilots' contributions to adaptation and resilience in everyday flights and b) relevant assessment methods. The survey focused on challenges faced by pilots in normal operations, and on the ways that pilots anticipate and monitor those challenges. We collected responses concerning revenue flights from two pilot groups; one group also provided responses concerning a simulated scenario. The results indicated that relatively few flights proceeded exactly as in the original flight plan. Pilots routinely anticipated and adapted to changing circumstances. We discuss some design and assessment challenges encountered for a survey on this topic, we provide 5 approaches to assessment, and we present example findings as illustrations. We expect assessment methods such as these will lead to useful surveys of resilience in flight.