Skip Navigation

Security Culture

Organizational performance impacts security culture as well

Safety Inspection

There is a growing body of evidence indicating a strong, positive relationship between safety and security culture and performance outcomes. Several organizations and agencies concur on this relationship including: the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute for Nuclear Power Operations (INPO), the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulations, and the Nuclear Energy Institute.

The IAEA concluded that the main safety and security objective is “largely based on common principles.” Safety and security culture traits are so closely intertwined, that deficiencies in safety may contribute to deficiencies in security and vice versa.

ORAU specializes in evaluating an organization’s security culture and then helping plan and implement meaningful changes that can result in measurable improvements. Measuring a security culture in a scientifically defensible and comprehensive manner is important. Understanding how to change that security culture is even more important.

As with the proven methods used in assessing and improving safety cultures, ORAU can adapt its proven methodology to impact positive results for an organization striving to improve its security.

Nanotechnology Studies Program Overview coverHow to Work With Us

Ready to begin studying your organization’s security culture? Learn about the many ways you can contract with ORAU to undertake a comprehensive security culture study.


ORAU Center for Safety Studies

Jeff Miller, PhD, CIH, CSP
(865) 576-7912

Building an effective nuclear security culture

In 2014, the IAEA developed self-assessment methods to help organizations better understand their organizational culture as it relates to security. Within this document, the IAEA described the traits associated with a healthy nuclear security culture. The IAEA Security Culture model consists of 30 traits divided into three areas:

  • Leadership Behaviors
  • Personal Behaviors
  • Management Systems

Nuclear Security Culture Infographic

The message is ultimately similar —the perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors of management and the workforce simultaneously contribute to an organization’s safety and security performance. Click image to enlarge.