The history of the development of practice in many engineering disciplines is, in large part, the story of failures, both imminent and actual, and of the changes to designs, standards and procedures made as the result of timely interventions or forensic analyses. All engineers, and more particularly structural engineers, should be failure literate. Failure literacy means knowing about the critical historical failure cases that have shaped the profession: not merely the surface technical details, but the environment, the communications difficulties and the procedural issues. In the US, an intensive effort has been under way for nearly a decade to promote failure literacy in engineering education and practice. A number of educational resources have been developed to make it easier for engineering students and practicing engineers to learn from failures.
Delatte, N. (2010). "Failure literacy in structural engineering." Eng.Struct., 32(7), 1952-1954.
NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Engineering Structures. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Engineering Structures, 32, 7, (07-01-2010); 10.1016/j.engstruct.2009.12.015