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Journal Article


Hauke A, Flaspöler E, Klüser R, Neitzner I, Reinert D. Saf. Health Work 2022; 13(4): 429-439.


(Copyright © 2022, Occupational Safety and Health Research Institute)








BACKGROUND: The risk observatory (RO) of the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV) provides strategic support to the German Social Accident Insurance Institutions (GSAII) in proactive prevention. It does so by identifying future challenges and opportunities for occupational safety and health (OSH) resulting from new trends and developments that affect employees as well as children in elementary education, pupils, and students.

METHODS: The core of the RO is an online survey that relies on a pool of new trends and developments identified via internet and literature research. 865 prevention experts of the GSAII and the DGUV participated in the survey. They rated trends and developments regarding their sector-specific risks and opportunities for OSH in the 5 years to come.

RESULTS: Sector-specific and over-all results show that besides well-known OSH risks such as musculoskeletal stress and noise, developments relevant for OSH come to the fore that do not have their origin in work itself, but are strongly influenced by political, social, economic, environmental, or technical developments that accident insurance can only peripherally influence. Shortage of skilled staff was identified as a threat to OSH in almost all sectors.

CONCLUSIONS: Prevention must find ways to address repercussions of such OSH risks. Cooperation and political awareness are therefore gaining in importance. Also, implementing a prevention culture in society and strengthening individuals' health and safety literacy, e.g., by target-group-specific communication and sensitization, as well as early safety and health education, help to counteract those OSH risks.

Language: en


Prevention; Future; Occupational safety and health; Trends; Risk observatory


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