Date of Conferral







Marlon Sukal


Tragic, life-changing, and fatal incidents are a reality on large-scale, civil construction projects. Despite a decline following the enforcement of the 1971 Occupational Safety and Health Act, serious and fatal incidents on heavy construction projects remain higher than that of the active military and have not declined in any notable way in the past decade. Industrial-organizational literature suggested a lack of applied testing for the well-developed theory of authentic leadership (AL) to impact safety outcomes. This quasi-experiment combined the constructs of authentic leadership with safety climate perception as quantifiable measurement of potential safety outcomes in the workplace. The research question focused on whether AL would impact safety climate, thus, reducing injury and fatalities on the job. The researcher examined 1 of the 4 segments that comprised a $1 billion freeway improvement project. Perceptions of 108 field craft personnel were collected on a Likert-type instrument before and after their supervisors attended a brief AL workshop. Utilizing an ordinal scale, statistical significance was calculated pre- and postintervention by computing a Mann-Whitney U for independent samples. Significant improvement was found following the supervisor workshop. The reduction in incidents, when compared to the jobsite's history and the other 3 jobsite segments associated with the highway improvement project, suggests a potential for this framework to support positive social change, that is, to reduce the human cost and suffering associated with industrial accidents.