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DuPont Bradley Curve

The DuPont Bradley Curve

Designed to help clients understand and benchmark the journey toward world-class safety performance, this proven, proprietary system has helped enable safety success within DuPont, and for our clients around the world, since 1995.

Using the DuPont Bradley Curve, DuPont Sustainable Solutions consultants help our clients in diverse industries and countries to understand the development of an effective safety culture, from its earliest stages to a mature state.

In a mature safety culture, safety is truly sustainable, with injury rates approaching zero. People feel empowered to take action as needed to work safely. They support and challenge each other. Decisions are made at the appropriate level and people live by those decisions. The organization, as a whole, realizes significant business benefits in higher quality, greater productivity, and increased profits.


Understanding the Bradley Curve
DuPont Bradley Curve
The Bradley Curve makes it simple for everyone to understand the shifts in mind-set and actions that need to occur over time to develop a mature safety culture.

  1. Reactive Stage
    People do not take responsibility. They believe that safety is more a matter of luck than management, and that “accidents will happen.” And over time, they do.
  2. Dependent Stage
    People see safety as a matter of following rules that someone else makes. Accident rates decrease and management believes that safety could be managed “if only people would follow the rules.”
  3. Independent Stage
    Individuals take responsibility for themselves. People believe that safety is personal, and that they can make a difference with their own actions. This reduces accidents further.
  4. Interdependent Stage
    Teams of employees feel ownership for safety, and take responsibility for themselves and others. People do not accept low standards and risk-taking. They actively converse with others to understand their point of view. They believe true improvement can only be achieved as a group, and that zero injuries is an attainable goal. 


The Proven Value of Safety Culture

In 2009, DuPont Sustainable Solutions conducted a study that demonstrated a direct correlation between the strength of an organization’s safety culture and its injury frequency rate and sustainable safety performance, as predicted by the Bradley Curve. Based on data collected since 1999 in our Safety Perceptions Survey , the study included 427,000 responses covering 64 industries, 41 countries, and more than 1,800 plant sites, including “best” and “worst” performing organizations. Today, our database features more than 750,000 responses.

The findings of this study, as well as the vast experience of our consultants working with clients around the world, make the benefits of a strong safety culture clear. By strengthening its safety culture, an organization can predictably reduce workforce injuries, even as it improves productivity, quality, and profits, as a result.