Early Research Program: Human Enhancement

TNO develops methods and tools for the harmonisation of work, humans and technology. Increased work demands and fast-paced technological developments put increasing pressure on humans, with enhanced risks for safety, productivity and health. By developing predictive real-time models for assessing human cognitive and physiological state, we make work safer, more productive, and healthier.

The world is changing: in many sectors, work demands change because of the increasing cost of errors on the one hand and the need for self-management on the other hand. Changing work demands are greatly facilitated by technological changes, such as increased automation, wearable technologies, Internet of Things, Big Data, etc.

Increased work demands lead to the need for harmonisation of the work-human-technology cluster. The human needs to adapt to increased work demands, as well as to changing technology. We need methods and tools for this harmonisation, in particular in areas such as transitions of tasks between humans and technology, situational awareness, and safety and security.

Task transitions play an important role in transport domains, such as the automotive and maritime industries, where a trend towards increasing autonomy is clearly visible. The cognitive state of the human driver or operator needs to be assessed in real time, in order to ensure seemless transition of control between the human and the automation. TNO develops state-of-the-art methods and tools for assessing cognitive state and integrates these methods with software tools to support the human in highly automated environments.

In safety domains, such as in highly demanding work carried out by the Police or Firefighters, the risk of increased stress and potential burnout always lurks around the corner. It is imperative that individuals are monitored both physiologically as well as psychologically, and that these measurements are related to context variables. We develop methods and tools, using wearable technology, to monitor individuals over long periods of time. We also develop predictive individualised models to provide advice at both the individual and organisational levels on stress management.

In cyber security domains, we witness an enormous increase in cyber attacks. Cyber Emergency Response Teams need to manage, respond to and recover from these attacks. The human factor is essential in the effectiveness with which these teams operate: situation awareness, information management, team training and support are key elements in how these teams operate. TNO develops tools to effectively support these teams.

Human Enhancement
Early Research Programme

Prof dr Jan Maarten Schraagen

  • Cognitive Engineering
  • Human Factors
  • Work analysis
  • Expertise
  • Team cognition


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