Can participatory ergonomics become 'the way we do things in this firm' - the Scandinavian approach to participatory ergonomics

Per Langaa Jensen

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    Abstract

    Under the label 'participatory ergonomics' the idea of establishing changes in working conditions through participatory approaches has been a central issue within ergonomics. Tools and procedures have been developed and demonstrated beneficial. But how this approach can be established as the way changes are made in firms have only had limited attention. In the Scandinavian countries legislation has, through mandatory joint working environment committees, tried to establish an organizational unit promoting direct participation. Several studies have showed that the intentions of the legislators are not automatically fulfilled, and they have reviled preconditions for more successful achievement. This opens for many supplementary regulatory strategies to improve activities in firms, but one has been in focus: establishing formalized management systems within occupational health and safety. This strategy may be contrary to the general intentions in the laws. Some of the conditions which must be taken into consideration are discussed.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalErgonomics
    Volume40
    Issue number10
    Pages (from-to)1078-1087
    Publication statusPublished - 1997

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