Category Archives: Aviation

Nawal K. Taneja: Should airlines offer more than flights?

Posted by Luigi Fort, Senior Marketing Executive

Should airlines offer more than flights?

A recent whitepaper from the Intelligence Unit of The Economist, entitled, ‘The Future of Air Travel’ examined this question. Its main tenet is that airlines who want to succeed should take control of the full travel chain and offer a complete door-to-door service. If they do not other players will enter the market and snatch the initiative.

Nawal TanejaAmong the top industry leaders interviewed for the document was Ashgate Author Nawal K. Taneja, whose latest book De­signing Future-Oriented Airline Businesses is also referenced in the text.

It quotes him: ‘If the airlines don’t re-strategise and become either travel facilitators or solution providers to the problems that people are facing …if they say, “we just fly seats from Airport A to Airport B,” people will still travel, but they will buy their travel services through new inter­mediaries.’

He maintains that new and cheaper technologies enable airlines to offer this fuller service and to a wide spectrum of customers. ‘We’re not just talking about sending limos to first-class travellers. We’re talking about sending a taxi to an economy-class traveller or suggesting to an ultra-economy-class customer “We know where you live; three blocks away is a bus station; that bus will take you to the subway, which will bring you to the airport.”’

Read The Economist whitepaper and for a deeper perspective read it in conjunction with Nawal K. Taneja’s latest book.

Designing future oriented airline businessesDesigning Future-Oriented Airline Businesses encourages airline managements to take a deeper dive into new ways of doing business.  It also provides a framework for developing strategies and capabilities, as well as executing them efficiently.

A key feature is a concluding section comprising five ‘Thought Leadership Pieces’ from senior executives both in and outside aviation.

Why are there so few women pilots?

Women pilots represent less than 6% of the worldwide pilot population and that is despite affirmative action in many countries. It is important that the aviation industry recruits more women not least because of genuine concerns about pilot shortages.

Absent AviatorsA new book, Absent Aviators, just published by Ashgate, tackles gender issues in the aviation workplace. Interestingly, the book’s introduction observes: “rather than a glass ceiling, the aviation domain appears to have glass doors. Many women may look inside and turn away from what they see and hear. Those who do enter can be faced with a strongly masculine, often misogynistic culture.”

Absent Aviators is edited by Donna Bridges, Charles Sturt University, Australia, Jane Neal-Smith, London Metropolitan Business School, and Albert J. Mills, St Mary’s University, Canada.

‘Aviation is an intensely competitive, global industry providing transportation and employment across the world. Absent Aviators is a must read for anyone with an interest in the gendered history, structure and culture of this fascinating industry. It is predicted that over 400,000 new pilots will be needed within the next two decades to meet increasing demand. Against this background, the contributors to this timely book ask, why are women so under-represented in commercial airline piloting, and what can be done to address this problem?’   Melissa Tyler, University of Essex, UK

‘Aviation buffs, sociologists of work, and feminists alike will applaud the achievements of this ample volume, detailing the man’s world of piloting. The diverse background of authors – including from within aviation – gives the volume its great texture and authority. As the cockpit remains one of the most staunchly masculinist spaces in industrial employment, Absent Aviators tackles these highly gendered realms as both a human problem and management issue.’   Christine Yano, University of Hawaii, USA

‘Absent Aviators presents a breathtaking exposure of the gendered dimensions of the historically male-dominated civil and military aviation industry. The diverse perspectives, conceptual and methodological approaches adopted by both academic and industry-based contributors provide unique insights into the barriers faced by female aviators in a variety of cases drawn from different national, historical and contemporary contexts.’   Lucy Taksa, Macquarie University, Australia

‘Aviation Investment’ – a new book by Doramas Jorge-Calderón

Posted by Luigi Fort, Senior Marketing Executive

In the light of the recent interim report on UK airport expansion by the country’s Airports Commission it is worth bearing in mind the issues and, especially, the methodologies involved in assessing the financial and economic viability of such complex projects. Now there is a book precisely on that subject, the only one of its kind. Aviation Investment: Economic Appraisal for Airports, Air Traffic Management, Airlines and Aeronautics by Doramas Jorge-Calderón of the European Investment Bank.

Aviation investmentAviation Investment uniquely addresses investment appraisal methods across the key industries that make up the aviation sector, including the airports, air traffic management, airline and aircraft manufacturing – or aeronautic – industries. It is a practice-oriented book where methods are presented through realistic case studies. The emphasis is on economic appraisal, or cost-benefit analysis, in order to determine the viability of projects not only for private investors but for society as a whole. Financial (cash flow) appraisal is illustrated alongside economic appraisal, as the latter builds on the former, but also to show how economic appraisal enhances standard financial appraisal to determine the long-term sustainability of any investment.

Aviation is a capital-intensive sector that is growing rapidly, with world traffic expected to double over the next 15 years or so. A great deal of economic appraisal of investment projects takes place already, as aviation is subject to government intervention through economic regulation and financial support, and as both investors and policy makers seek to understand issues such as how environmental legislation may impact the viability of investments. Both economic growth and welfare go hand in hand with sound investment decisions, particularly regarding sectors such as aviation where investments are large and almost invariably debt-financed.

Aviation Investment offers all aviation sub-sectors a single-source reference, bringing together the theoretical background of the economic appraisal literature and aviation investment in practice. It is written in a style that is accessible to non-academic professionals, using formulae only where strictly necessary to enable practical applications, and benefits from the substantial practical experience of the author.

About the Author: Doramas Jorge-Calderón is a Senior Economist at the European Investment Bank (EIB), the project financing bank of the European Union, based in Luxembourg. He has been appraising investments for 15 years, many of which in the aviation sector, across Europe, Africa and Asia-Pacific. Prior to his position at the EIB he worked on economic regulation and competition policy with consultants National Economic Research Associates (NERA) in London. He holds a doctorate in transport economics from Leeds University, and has written a number of papers for academic and practitioner publications on investment appraisal, demand analysis and industrial organisation in the aviation sector.

When selecting a pilot – how do we choose the ‘Right Stuff’?

Posted by Luigi Fort, Senior Marketing Executive

How do we choose the ‘Right Stuff’?

From the early years of aviation here are a couple of examples of what to look for when choosing an aviator…

In 1914: “he must possess an unusual amount of dare-devil spirit” (Dockeray and Isaacs 1921).

The US War Department in 1941: “eliminate all the mental and nervous weaklings including temperamental and personality handicapped individuals such as eccentrics, disturbers, irritable, unsocial, peculiar, gossipy, arrogant, and other mental twists types, all unsuited to aviation.

They are taken from ‘A History of Aeromedical Psychology’ (Tatana M. Olsen, Mathew McCauley and Carrie H. Kennedy), the opening chapter of ‘Aeromedical Psychology’, the new Ashgate book edited by Carrie H. Kennedy, University of Virginia, USA and Gary G. Kay, Cognitive Research Corporation, USA.

Aeromedical PsychologyHow has the science and practice of pilot selection progressed since those times?

Kennedy and Gray provide a guide to aeromedical psychology and the training and selection process.

Is it legal to restrain passengers?

Posted by Luigi Fort, Senior Marketing Executive

Anger in the airA recent BBC News report covered an air rage incident and posed the question ‘Who, What, Why: Is it legal to restrain air passengers?’ The report outlined a legal answer to this question.

If you are interested in air rage and the conditions that can cause and prevent it do read Anger in the Air by Joyce A. Hunter.  She looks at the air rage phenomenon in considerable depth.  In particular she considers how personnel policies can impact on air rage and also the importance of customer service.

Ashgate at the Building Fatigue Management into Safety Systems conference

Ashgate are a sponsor and exhibitor at the Building Fatigue Management into Safety Systems conference organised by the Royal Aeronautical Society’s Human Factors and Operations Training Group, 30 October, 2012, Crawley, UK. We are particularly pleased to support the Helen Muir Award which will be presented at the event.

At the conference Captain Daniel Maurino will introduce the SMS concept and its relationship to Human Factors. He is a series editor for Ashgate Studies in Human Factors for Flight Operations.

Aviation psychology and the chain of safety

We are looking forward to the 30th EAAP conference (24-28 September, Sardinia, Italy), where we will be displaying a range of aviation psychology books. Luigi Fort will be manning the Ashgate stand.

One of our recent books in this field is Mechanisms in the Chain of Safety: Research and Operational Experiences in Aviation Psychology, which is edited by Alex de Voogt and Teresa D’Oliveira.

The book had considerable support from EAAP. It presents recent findings in aviation psychology on input, coping and control mechanisms to improve the chain of safety. It examines individual components in the chain while also demonstrating that understanding the interrelation between the various components is essential for future development.

The RoSPA Occupational Safety and Health Journal recently carried this extensive review.

More about Mechanisms in the Chain of Safety: Research and Operational Experiences in Aviation Psychology