Concurrent optimization of integrated macro-ergonomics and resilience engineering in a pharmaceutical manufacturer

Document Type : Research Paper


1 School of Industrial Engineering, K. N. Toosi University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

2 School of Industrial Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Tehran, Iran


Pharmaceutical manufacturers have a vital role in the healthcare system insofar as any disruption in their production processes jeopardizes people’s health and the environment they inhabit. Resilience engineering (RE) could shift such systems from an abnormal to a normal state. In addition, macro-ergonomics (ME) can enhance all system factors in a pharmaceutical plant. It is argued that integrating RE with ME could result in the overall optimization of a pharmaceutical unit. This study presents an integrated approach based on RE and ME factors which could be used to optimize the performance of pharmaceutical plants. A standard questionnaire was designed and distributed among experts. Data envelopment analysis (DEA) and fuzzy DEA were used to conduct optimization. Then. Pearson correlation test and paired t-test were used to evaluate the best DEA or fuzzy DEA model. Next, the best model was tested in terms of RE, ME, and combined factors. The results showed that reporting culture, flexibility, and formalization are the most important factors in the pharmaceutical industry. This is the first study to carry out an integrated optimization of RE and ME in a pharmaceutical unit and, thus, provides a practical approach for the pharmaceutical industry.


Main Subjects

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  • Receive Date: 28 July 2019
  • Revise Date: 07 September 2019
  • Accept Date: 29 September 2019
  • First Publish Date: 29 September 2019