TRIPOD BETA: Guidance on using Tripod Beta in the investigation and analysis of incidents, accidents and business losses

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  • Published: April 2023
  • REF/ISBN: 978 1 78725 361 2
  • Edition: Version 6
  • Status: Current

The investigation of incidents, accidents, business upsets and other events is fundamental to the risk management and business performance of organisations.  However, all too often, incident investigations do not go far enough to identify:

  • the risk controls (barriers) that failed;
  • human factors and performance influencing factors, and
  • the underlying organisational factors that ultimately caused the incident.

Tripod Beta is a 'gold standard' incident investigation and analysis methodology.  It is a flexible and scientifically developed incident investigation and analysis methodology.  First developed in the 1990s, Tripod Beta is tried and tested, with a network of practitioners based all over the world.  The Tripod Foundation maintains and updates the Tripod Beta methodology regularly, and has a network of accredited practitioners and trainers: Tripod | Tripod (

Tripod Beta specifically helps the investigator uncover:

  • What happened – the sequence of events;
  • How it happened – the failed or effective risk controls (barriers), and
  • Why it happened – the human actions and decisions, performance influencing factors, and the underlying organisation/systemic causes.

Now on version 6.0, this publication explains the Tripod Beta methodology and provides step-by-step guidance on its application.

For a more lightweight investigation methodology, also see Tripod lite: Tripod Lite | Tripod (

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