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Engineering Design Centre

Professor Tim Horberry


Professor Tim Horberry

Professor Tim Horberry

Visiting Research Fellow

Research groups: Healthcare Design Group, Inclusive Design Group
Telephone: +61 3 9905 1389 (Australia)

Personal website

Photo of Professor Tim Horberry


  • BA (Hons), MSc, MIEHF, C.ErgHF, PhD

Tim Horberry is Professor of Human Factors at Monash University Accident Research Centre (MUARC), Australia. He is also a Visiting Research Fellow at the EDC, Cambridge University, England. Prior to this, he was an Associate Professor at the University of Queensland, and Head of Human Factors at the UK Transport Research Laboratory. Tim leads human factors research at MUARC; he also provides strategic direction for MUARC’s simulation facilities. In addition to transport safety, Professor Horberry is also involved in industrial human factors, patient safety and human-centred safe design work.

‘Safe design’ is fast becoming an influential injury prevention approach due to a growing recognition of the contribution of design to many workplace incidents. It is also an area of international policy importance (an action area of the Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022). Safe design aims to eliminate workplace hazards by systematically involving end-users in the design or redesign process.

Professor Tim Horberry’s research develops, applies and disseminates a task-based, human-centred safe design (HCSD) approach. The work is multidisciplinary through the combination of human factors, design and risk management techniques. Tim’s goal is to create and apply user-centred design approaches to improve transport and workplace safety by systematically involving end-users in the design process. Through his work at Monash University (Australia) and Cambridge University (UK) he has undertaken safe design work with:

- Mining equipment (eg safe access and egress for operators and maintainers)

- Road vehicle design (eg car dashboards)

- Road design- using psychological road audits.

- Safer workplace design– eg medical procedures linked to Central Venous Catheterisation.

- Developing safe design methods and tools: eg the SiDE and OMAT task-based approaches.

His vision for the future is usable, fit for purpose equipment, systems and technologies that are well-integrated with the demands of the workplace.


Selected Publications

I have written over 150 peer-reviewed papers. I have generally published in the higher impact ergonomics, transport and accident analysis journals; I am the first author in the majority of the papers. I have written/edited five books.

In addition to academic publications, I have written confidential and/or unpublished research reports for organisations such as the UK Highways Agency, CSIRO (Australia), multi-national mining houses and the European Commission.


Horberry, T. and Burgess-Limerick, R. (2015). Applying a Human-Centred Process to Re-Design Equipment and Work Environments. Safety, 1, pp7-15. 

Horberry, T. (2014). Better Integration of Human Factors Considerations within Safety in Design. Theoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science. 15 (3), pp 293-304.

Horberry, T., García-Fernández P., Ventsislavova-Petrova P. and Castro C. (2014). Psychological road audits: Background, development and initial findings. Ergonomics Australia, 2014: 6:1

Horberry, T., Burgess-Limerick, R. & Fuller, R. (2013). The Contributions of Human Factors and Ergonomics to a Sustainable Minerals Industry. Ergonomics. 56(3):556-64.

Horberry, T. Burgess-Limerick, R. & Steiner L. (2010). Human Factors for the Design, Operation and Maintenance of Mining Equipment. Authored book. CRC Press, USA.

Horberry, T., Anderson, J., Regan, M., Triggs, T. and Brown, J. (2006). Driver Distraction: The Effects of Concurrent In-Vehicle Tasks, Road Environment Complexity and Age on Driving Performance.  Accident Analysis and Prevention, 38 (1), pp185-191.