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Project description

As a cultural and cognitive anthropologist with a large investment in understanding commercial aviation operations, I have a long standing interest in the roles of language and culture in the organization of pilots’ behavior.  Many years ago, I met Captain R. Alejandro Pérez-Chavéz (AeroMexico, ASPA, and IFALPA). Alex was a professional pilot learning to be an anthropologist. I was an anthropologist learning to be a professional pilot. We quickly became friends.   In the early 1990s Captain Pérez and I had authored a presentation for the International Federation of AirLine Pilots' Associations (IFALPA) on culture and flight deck operations.  In the fall of 2001, a contract with Boeing gave me the opportunity to survey the state of the art in this area.


Edwin Hutchins, Barbara E. Holder, R. Alejandro Pérez. Culture and Flight Deck Operations. Prepared for the Boeing Company. January, 2002.