chapter  18
20 Pages

Personality in Pilot Selection and Training Is There a Right Stuff?

WithKarina Mesarosova

Pilot personality became headlines news with the dramatic event of the loss of Germanwings flight 9525 on the 24 March 2015. Gordon W. Allport’s theory was a reaction to the non-humanistic viewpoints of the leading psychoanalysts. Personality characteristics are based on the comparison of an individual to a suitable representative sample; this allows for comparisons to be made between individuals in relations to the different characteristics. The gap in airline pilot selection came to many as an alarming surprise, with many press reports highlighting the failure of the aviation industry and regulators to regulate some form of psychological screening. The Second World War led to the demand for a high number of pilots, and high training attrition rate led to the re-visiting of the work conducted by the psychologists of the First World War. Many argue that crew resource management is the aviation industry’s solution to behaviour issues and that it effectively reduces the risk of psychosocial errors.