In the Sky Between Expertise and Unexpected Feelings and Resources of Pilots’ Resilient Ego: A Psychoanalytic Point of View

Sarah Francesca Maria Bigi, Maria Gabriella Pediconi, Michela Brunori, Glauco Maria Genga, Sabrina Venzi

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The psychoanalytic perspective of this paper suggests the notion of the Resilient Ego as an essential part of military pilots’ job. In order to explore their subjective management of Human Mental Workload, we analysed their resilience based both on structural aspects of their job, and on practical factors of their daily performances and tasks. Moreover, our work presents a qualitative analysis of military pilots’ testimonies about the most significant unexpected events of their career. We analysed their subjective perceptions as well as professional and interpersonal resources they used to face to unforeseen events. In order to describe the mental contents that make up the subjective factor that promotes success in managing the unexpected, we included the analysis of the textual component of pilots’ interviews. We found that in mastering daily job as well as the unexpected, the Resilient Ego is based on realism and cooperative thoughts. On the one hand, technical and non-technical skills – expertise components – are specifically supported by Crew Resource Management (CRM), on the other hand military pilots’ family relationships animate subjective perceptions during flight performances. The Resilient Ego in the sky feeds daily risky tasks with the affective relationships cared for on earth, even when pilots need to manage dangerous conditions. If unforeseen events are an integral part of military pilots’ workload, the analysis of how pilots deal with the unexpected increases our knowledge of the Human Factor and provides information about the subjective factors of resilience.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHuman Mental Workload: Models and Applications
Pages27-57
Number of pages31
Volume1318
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Event4th International Symposium on Human Mental Workload: Models and Applications, H-WORKLOAD 2020 - Granada, Spagna
Duration: 5 Dec 20205 Dec 2020

Conference

Conference4th International Symposium on Human Mental Workload: Models and Applications, H-WORKLOAD 2020
CityGranada, Spagna
Period5/12/205/12/20

Keywords

  • Mental workload
  • Military pilots
  • Psychoanalysis
  • Resilience
  • Unforeseen events

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