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Personal profile


I lead the MUARC human factors team and manage our driving simulator facilities. I am Professor of Human Factors and an Associate Director at MUARC. I am also a Senior Visiting Researcher at the Engineering Design Centre, University of Cambridge, UK. Previously I was Associate Professor at the University of Queensland, and a Principal Researcher at the UK’s Transport Research Laboratory.

Since completing my PhD in December 1998 (transport safety: the design of warnings for road and rail environments), I have held increasingly senior jobs in Australia and the UK. My areas of research specialisation cover human factors, safe design and transport safety. Over the past 18 years I have been a Chief Investigator/Lead Researcher on research grants worth over $17 million in transport, mining, manufacturing and medical safety. I have held research grants with the Australian Research Council, NIOSH USA and the European Commission (FP7 and Marie Curie schemes).

I have published my research widely, including five books and over 150 peer-reviewed papers. Externally, I am the Monash University representative for the Australian Driverless Vehicles Initiative (AVDI), sit on journal editorial boards and have close links with key stakeholders in the road transport, mining, medical and defence domains.

One of my research areas focuses on safe design.  Poor design is a major contributory factor in many workplace and transport incidents. My work involves creating and applying user-centred design approaches to improve safety. It examines how a safe design approach that focuses on end-users can help improve the design of equipment/technologies, tasks and work/transport environments. Success has been demonstrated by organisations now using my co-created safe design tools, and through redesigned work tasks/environments (e.g. medical procedures). I have recently completed a NIOSH (USA) funded project focusing on human-centred safe design for mining equipment; I am currently writing an international book in this area.

Research interests

Safe design is an area of national policy importance (an action area of the Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022). My research is multidisciplinary and innovative through the combination of human factors, risk management and design techniques to create and apply a human centred safe design process. My vision is to bring user requirement and workplace needs to the heart of the design process for safe equipment, tasks and work environments. Over the past five years I have been expanding my research with key national groups (eg Work Safe Australia) as well as leading international organisations (eg NIOSH, USA and Cambridge University, UK). My mission is to create and apply user centred design approaches to improve workplace and transport safety.

External positions

Visiting Researcher, University of Cambridge

20 Mar 2012 → …


  • Safe Design
  • Transport Safety
  • Simulation
  • Human Factors
  • Human-Centred Design
  • Road Design
  • Mining

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2003 2019

Research Output 1994 2019

Decision-centred design in healthcare: the process of identifying a decision support tool for airway management

Schnittker, R., Marshall, S. D., Horberry, T. & Young, K., 1 May 2019, In : Applied Ergonomics. 77, p. 70-82 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Pedestrian smartphone distraction: prevalence and potential severity

Horberry, T., Osborne, R. & Young, K., 2019, In : Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour. 60, p. 515-523 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

The co-design process of a decision support tool for airway management

Schnittker, R., Marshall, S., Horberry, T. & Young, K. L., 2019, Proceedings of the 20th Congress of the International Ergonomics Association (IEA 2018) - Volume I: Healthcare Ergonomics. Bagnara, S., Alexander, T., Tartaglia, R., Fujita, Y. & Albolino, S. (eds.). Cham Switzerland: Springer, p. 111-120 10 p. (Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing; vol. 818).

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

A comparison of the Bow-Tie and STAMP approaches to reduce the risk of surgical instrument retention

Chatzimichailidou, M. M., Ward, J., Horberry, T. & Clarkson, P. J., 1 May 2018, In : Risk Analysis. 38, 5, p. 978-990 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Defining the upper extremity range of motion for safe automobile driving

Rawal, A., Chehata, A., Horberry, T., Shumack, M., Chen, C. & Bonato, L., 1 May 2018, In : Clinical Biomechanics. 54, p. 78-85 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review