Occupational Health and Safety and Employer Motivation

Peter Hasle, Per Langå Jensen

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


    It is often argued and supported by a number of case studies that investment in human factors and occupational health and safety can pay. But any employer has a number of possible in-vestments, and many of these may have a larger marginal utility than health and safety. In addition it is often difficult to calculate the exact pay off for human factors and health and safety – how to calculate higher motivation for instance. The economic benefit as a possible driving force for improvement of occupational health and safety is likely to exist but it must be considered a relatively weak force. Another possible motivator is state regulation but it does not by itself constitute a strong motivator as the frequency of inspections and the level of fines are low in most countries. But as a signal about legitimacy it is an important factor. It is the necessity to secure legitimacy which seems to be the most important driving force for improvements in health and safety. No employer likes to be ‘branded’ as immoral, manifested in fines by the labour inspectors or media attention to an unsafe conduct. Strategies to im-prove health and safety therefore need to focus on the legitimacy as the probably strongest force for improvements og occupational health and safety.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationHuman & Organisational Issues in the Digital Enterprise
    EditorsEnda F. Fallon, Waldemar Karwowski
    Place of PublicationGalway
    PublisherDepartment of Industrial Engineering, National Uni
    Publication date2004
    Publication statusPublished - 2004
    Event9th International Conference on Human Aspects of Advanced Manufacturing: Agility and Hybrid Automation - National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland
    Duration: 25 Aug 200427 Aug 2004
    Conference number: 9


    Conference9th International Conference on Human Aspects of Advanced Manufacturing
    LocationNational University of Ireland


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