http://eu-vri.eu
 
 
 
Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH)
 
 

Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH) is a multidisciplinary research and specialist organization the mission statement of which is to promote occupational health and safety as part of good living. The strategic goals of the Institute are:

  • Safe and meaningful work
  • Supportive organizations
  • Effective occupational health services
  • Flourishing employees
FIOH is a national governmental institute covering relevant research aspects of work life and conditions of work, including surveillance of working conditions, well-being at work, physical, chemical, biological and physiological exposures, occupational medicine, psychology and stress, epidemiology, safety and organization of work. The main functions of the Institute are research, specialist advisory services, training and communications. The Institute was founded in 1945 by the State Medical Board and social partners from industry and trade unions, insurance institutions and the Ministry of Social Affairs. In 1978 the Institute was nationalized under the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health. The board of directors of the Institute consists of representatives from Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, Ministry of Employment and the Economy, labour Organizations and employer organizations. The Institute receives state subsidies which cover 80% of the costs of the operations approved by Parliament, and is expected to raise funding for the remaining 20% itself.

 
   
 
 
Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (MSAH)
 
 

 

 

 

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (MSAH) aims to provide the population with a healthy environment, good health and functional capacity, and adequate income and social protection in different life situations. The Ministry directs and guides the development and policies of social protection, social welfare and health care. It defines the main course of social and health policy, prepares legislation and key reforms and steers their implementation, and handles the necessary links with the political decision-making process.

The Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH) is a part of the concern of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (MSAH). FIOH is the main institute in the field of the Finnish occupational safety and health research. MSAH organises annually negotiations with the FIOH in order to assure that OSH research is focused on those topics in the working life which mostly need development. The negotiations are coordinated jointly by the Department for Occupational Safety and Health and the Wellbeing and Health Department. MSAH is also coordinating the expert work in collaboration with OSH research institutes in order to update the document on 'OSH Research in Finland and its Focal Areas'. The document is intended to be taken into account both by OSH research institutes and funding organisations.

MSAH has been coordinating many national development programs aiming to prevent occupational risks and develop working conditions and working societies. These programs are closely coordinated by the national social partners and conducted by different kinds of OSH research and development institutes. An important role in these projects belongs to FIOH. The programs are funded via the annual budget of MSAH.

MSAH has also special funds (about 350 000 €/year) in the annual budget to be used for different kinds of OSH research and development projects supporting the strategic policy of the Ministry and also developing the national safety inspection supervision work. MSAH itself does not have any research activities; it is a coordinating body and partly funding OSH research.
 
   
 
 
Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency (Tukes)
 
 

Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency (Tukes) is tasked with the oversight and promotion of technical safety and conformity related to products, services and production systems, consumer safety, chemical safety and the safety and quality of plant protection products.

The reorganized Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency (Tukes) become operational on 1 January 2011 following the incorporation of the chemicals product control duties of the National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health (Valvira), the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) and the Finnish Food Safety Authority (Evira) into the Safety Technology Authority (Tukes). The chemicals product control tasks and the duties of the old Safety Technology Authority is forming the basis of the array of safety duties performed by the new Tukes.

The new Tukes is the Finnish national agency responsible for chemicals product control and an important partner of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). The rearrangement will also make Tukes a key player in the promotion of chemical safety, with one of its visions being to make Finland the leading European country in terms of chemical safety.

The new Tukes is operating under several Government ministries, with the Ministry of Employment and the Economy in charge of Tukes’s administrative steering and supervision and the Ministries of Employment and the Economy, Transport and Communications, Agriculture and Forestry, the Interior, Social Affairs and Health, and the Environment collaborating in and contributing to the agency’s steering in their respective branches. Our organisation has four Groups: Product and Installations Surveillance, Industrial Plants Surveillance, Chemical Products Surveillance, and R&D and Support Services. Our permanent staff numbers 200 people. The main offices are in Helsinki and Tampere.

The Product and Installations Surveillance Group supervises the safety of products and the technical reliability by means of surveillance visits to retailers, importers and manufacturers. Among the surveillance objects are electrical equipment, articles of precious metals, construction products, and rescue service equipment – as any product placed on the market must comply with the relevant requirements. The Industrial Plants Surveillance Group attends to the surveillance of the safety of industrial plants and installations, contracting and installation business, and inspection services. We also grant official approvals of testing bodies, inspectors, and personnel certification bodies. The Chemical Products Surveillance Group attends to the enforcement tasks within chemical products surveillance, the REACH and CLP Regulations, biocides legislation, and the risk assessment, approvals and registration of plant protection products. The R&D and Support Services Group provides the necessary administrative services, participates in development of the legislation and working methods, and produces information services. Much of the information and experiences retrieved from surveillance and R&D is forwarded to our interest groups. The Group staff also takes care of an active communication and training policy, aiming strongly at achieving our surveillance objectives, in particular as to prevention of accidents.

 
   
 
 
Czech Technology Platform on Industrial Safety (CZ-TPIS)
 
 

Czech Technology Platform on Industrial Safety (CZ-TPIS) is a civil association created under Association of Citizens Act No.83/1990 and its mission is to associate members on the basis of common interest. Industrial enterprises and small and medium-sized businesses can become platform members, as well as individuals, research institutions established by the government, universities, professional alliances and associations or agencies of state authority of all levels.

Mission

Czech Technology Platform on Industrial Safety (CZ-TPIS) was entered into the civil association registry with the Ministry of Interior on June 5th 2007 pursuant to the resolution of the General Assembly initiated by the Faculty of Safety Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava. The emergence of this civil association can be attributed to the fact that at the European level the European Technology Platform on Industrial Safety (ETPIS) already exists and that national platforms (NTPIS) should operate in all EU Member States while being covered by ETPIS. Such national platforms already exist in France, Germany, Poland, Italy, Spain and other countries. The mission of the Czech Technology Platform on Industrial Safety is to strengthen and develop the safety of industry in the Czech Republic, to identify the needs of the Czech Republic in this area and subsequently to promote them at the European level through ETPIS, which works closely with the European Commission. CZ-TPIS, with its activities, should link industry, universities, research and government organizations and create a bridge between science, research and industry in the field of industrial safety.

Objectives

CZ-TPIS individual goals arising from the strategic research agenda can be summarized as follows:

  • CZ-TPIS involvement in the implementation of key activities of ETPIS
  • Vision processing of the development of industrial safety, developing Strategic Research Agenda (SRA) and Action Plan Implementation (IAP)
  • Initiation, support and promotion of the implementation of scientific and technological projects in the field of industrial safety
  • Creating a bridge between science, research and industry in  the field of industrial safety
  • Increasing safety and competitiveness of  the Czech industry
  • Promotion of innovative activities and scientific and technological development in the industry
  • Integration into existing networks and creating new partnerships

CZ-TPIS has six major working groups focused on:

  • Advanced technologies for risk reduction
  • Methods of assessment and risk reduction
  • Human and organizational factors
  • Education and Training
  • Safety risks in transport
  • Research and application in the field of Nanosafety

CZ-TPIS has 37 active members (universities, research institutions, industrial companies, etc.).

 
   
 
 
Institut National de l´Environnement Industriel et des Risques (INERIS)
 
 
The Institut National de l'Environnement Industriel et des Risques (INERIS) is a public research body of an industrial and commercial character, under the supervision of the French Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development. INERIS’s mission is to assess and prevent accidental and chronic risks to people and the environment originating from industrial activities, chemical substances and underground works. INERIS engages in two main sorts of research and studies:
  • Characterisation and understanding of the phenomena that underlie the risks affecting the safety or property, people, health and the environment as a result of economic activities.
  • Improvement of the identification and evaluation of such risks in order to enable decision-makers in the public and private sectors to adopt the most appropriate measures to improve environmental safety.

Using the findings of these research works, INERIS offers advice and high-level technical expertise to public administrations, industry and regional authorities and develops an active policy for disseminating information to a wide public. Technical consultancy is also provided to support Public Authorities in their regulatory and standardization activities.

INERIS’s work is based on an original methodology that combines an experimental approach, modelling and experience feedback. INERIS is equipped with physico-chemical analysis laboratories and testing and computing facilities that rank among the best in France. It has a total of 548 employees of whom 76% are professional engineers and scientists. There are five operational areas carrying out research programmes, expert appraisals, dissemination and knowledge-transfer in the fields of chronic risk, accidental risk, soil and sub-soil risk, certification.

INERIS is involved in a number of international and European research programmes in partnership with industry and other scientific research bodies both in France and abroad. Within Europe, INERIS has strengthened its involvement in the European Commission’s framework programmes for research and technological development.

 
   
 
 
Ministère de l'écologie, du développement durable, des transports et de l’Énergie (MEDDE)
 
 

Whether they be technological, water based, natural or health-related, the risks which our industrial societies are faced with today are both serious and numerous. These risks can be reduced by taking preventative action: technological risk prevention plans (PPRT), the "big rivers" plan, the status map for "rain-flooding", the "earthquake" plan, etc. The challenge of controlling technological risks is a considerable one and involves rigorous inventory checks of the most dangerous industrial sites, adaptation of regulation, inspection of classified systems and safety testing. A very specific vigilance is required to deal with emerging risks (pesticides, nanotechnology, GMOs, etc). Air and water quality, the treatment of pollution such as noise are also just as important as they have a crucial role in maintaining human health.

Those questions has to be considered through different objectives: creating responsible growth, encouraging the creation of sustainable, modest means of production and consumption, develop a pattern for sustainable towns and housing for everyone, preserve biodiversity and quality of the environment, master natural, technological and health risks, involve the regions in sustainable development, reinforce the competitivity of the regions, involve with socio-economic stakeholders and the general public and mobilise society.

In the field of risks, the ministry draws up and implements policy regarding:

  • understanding, assessment, prevention and reduction of chemical, biological and radioactive pollution, and of various environmental nuisances, especially noise,
  • understanding, assessment, prevention of risks related to human activities and natural hazards, to flood prevention and forecasting rises in water levels,
  • evaluating the quality and environmental aspects of the soil and atmosphere,
  • preventing waste production, as well as its recovering and processing.

To face that challenges, the ministry conduct a policy regarding research. For that purposes, the ministry has a Directorate of Research and Innovation. This directorate works with the Ministry for Research to define the orientation of the national policy on research and innovation in respect of the environment, town and country planning, and transport and energy. The Directorate of Research and Innovation is also involved in the definition of action plans or decisions of the National Agency Research (ANR) and of the main research public bodies in its fields. Along with the Ministry’s directorates-general, it steers the Ministry’s 25 research programmes which fund research projects selected through calls and supervises their implementation, appraisal and development and the dissemination of their results. Innovation is core to these programmes so as to increase the competitiveness of local economic sectors.

MEDDTL has already established links with the French Founding Research Agency (ANR) to create interface between the ANR and the activities of the ERA-NET.

 
   
 
 
Fondation pour une Culture de Sécurité Industrielle (FonCSI)
 
 

The Fondation pour une Culture de Sécurité Industrielle (FonCSI) is a French research foundation, created in April 2005. It is a non-profit organization that funds research in the public interest. Its objectives are to undertake and fund research activities that contribute to improving safety in hazardous organizations, to work towards better mutual understanding between high-risk industries and civil society, and to foster the acculturation of all stakeholders to the questions, trade-offs and problems related to risk and safety.

Originality

Being at the crossroads between stakeholders concerned with industrial safety and the management of technological risk (industry, local government, trade unions, NGOs, researchers), FonCSI's research activities comprise of several original aspects: innovative research themes, grounded in stakeholders' needs; collaboration between university researchers and application sites (industrial facilities, local government agencies, competent authorities, etc.), established by FonCSI; a multidisciplinary approach, fostering collaboration between social sciences and engineering to promote the original solutions; and, a focus on the dissemination and transfer of research results to all stakeholders, via publications, the organisation of conferences and seminars and education and training programs, and collaboration with industrial sites and facilities.

Means

FonCSI allocates its budget to the funding of research (PhD theses, research collaboration contracts with European universities and research laboratories) and to dissemination activities. The FonCSI issues a Call for Proposals every two years: The socio-cultural success factors for operational experience feedback and organizational learning activities (2004); Arbitration between safety and other criteria (economic, legal, societal) (2006); Risk, uncertainty and decision-making (2008); Technological risk and societal concerns: Dynamics of the negotiation, arbitration and compromise processes (2010).

FonCSI also funds the development of a research network called “NeTWork” grouping high level scientists to handle recent questions (“How desirable and avoidable is proceduralization of safety”, in 2010). This research has led to numerous academic publications and also to the appearance of a “Cahier de la sécurité industrielle” each month. These documents, freely downloadable from FonCSI's web site, are frequently used by all the stakeholders. The research activities also encourage PhD students to be trained in Industrial Safety and to obtain positions in companies.

 
 
   
 
 
Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM)
 
 

BAM Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung is a senior scientific and technical Federal Institute with responsibility to the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi). Our mission is Safety in Technology and Chemistry. In pursuing our mission, we ensure ongoing safety in technology and chemistry through research and development (60%), testing, analysis, approval and certification (15%), and consultation, information and advice (25%). The five key areas of activity are Analytical chemistry, Safe handling of dangerous materials and dangerous goods, Safe and environmentally compatible use of materials, Safe operation of technical systems and processes, and Damage mechanisms and damage analysis. BAM handles a broad spectrum of assignments in a modern infrastructure. We conduct research, test and consult in the fields of technology and chemistry, assessing and limiting risk leading to scientifically based regulations and standards. Apart from the major topics of industrial safety, as a national institute, we secure a supply of well trained experts in our area of work which often is lacking in university facilities. Therefore, at any one time, BAM employs approx. 140 Ph. D. students working on theses in natural sciences or engineering. Ph. D. adjudication usually takes place at a university in Berlin, but may also be held in other cities of Germany or abroad. The research itself is usually supervised by BAM scientists on the academic staff. It sometimes takes place at a non-local university. BAM has extensive experimental facilities at its disposal, together with measurement, testing and analytical instruments. This number of specialized test facilities is not available in any comparable form in Germany, Europe, even worldwide from an institution providing access as an external service. These “unique” test facilities, and the particular testing capabilities implied, constitute a major feature of distinction for our research and services. The annual budget is approx 140 million €. The human resources are of approximately 1800 employees.

BAM will involve EU-VRi, the Operating Agent of the European Technology Platform on Industrial Safety, as a Third Party making its resources available to a beneficiary.

European Virtual Institute for Integrated Risk Management (EU-VRi) provides professional service, consulting, information and education needed in the broad area of modern integrated risk management and, in particular, management of emerging risks. EU-VRi has been legally established in Nov. 2006 by 5 founding members (BZF, INERIS, Steinbeis, Technologica, and University of Stuttgart). EU-VRi is organized as a European Economic Interest Grouping (EEIG) and its purpose is to facilitate or develop the economic activities of its members by a pooling of resources, activities or skills. EU-VRi provides services to industry, research community and/or public authorities. In addition, EU-VRi facilitates the mobility of researchers between research and industry, and it acts as a vehicle to create efficient consortia to address the R&D needs and other needs of industry. In 2009 about 40 companies from the EU and other countries are associated members. They come from industry, R&D organizations and academia, governmental and non-governmental/international organizations and SMEs (small and medium enterprises).

 
 
   
 
 
Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi)
 
 

The Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Technologie, subsequently referred to as BMWi) is a supreme Federal authority. The specific objectives of BMWi include:

  • developing opportunities to ensure sustained economic growth and competitiveness with other economies
  • ensuring a high level of employment
  • strengthening small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
  • promoting new technologies and innovation to maintain economic competitiveness
  • linking economic and ecological goals
  • expanding the worldwide division of labour and a free system of world trade
  • ensuring a secure energy supply at appropriate prices

Apart from its own work, the Ministry oversees six subordinated agencies. One of them is the Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (subsequently referred to as BAM). For the SAF€RA project, BMWi will form an institutional couple together with BAM. BMWi is the superior authority to BAM; insofar the budget of BAM is part of the BMWi budget.

 
   
 
 
National Center for Scientific Research (DEMOKRITOS)
 
 

DEMOKRITOS is a state owned multidisciplinary research centre, the larger of Greece, performing R&D in the area of physical sciences and technology (www.demokritos.gr). The scientific activities of the centre are organised in eight administratively independent Institutes: Nuclear Physics, Nuclear Technology and Radiation Protection, Materials Science, Telecommunications and Informatics, Microelectronics, Physics/Chemistry, Biology and Radioisotopes and Radio diagnostic Products. DEMOKRITOS employs about 900 permanent and fixed-term-contract employees and its annual turnover is 30 million EURO, 65% from the Greek Government and 35% from third party contracts. Expertise in industrial safety has been developed in the laboratories of Systems Reliability and Industrial Safety Laboratory (SRISL) and Environmental Research Laboratory (EREL), both belong administratively to the Institute of Nuclear Technology and Radiation Protection. SRISL has long experience in quantitative risk assessment of technological systems and risk management, while EREL in Complex Fluid Dynamic dispersion modelling and Hydrogen Safety.

Systems Reliability and Industrial Safety Laboratory (SRISL)

SRISL was founded in 1988 with initial objective the development of an integrated capability for the quantitative risk assessment of large nuclear and non-nuclear systems. The laboratory has contributed to the state-of-the art of system reliability, quantified risk assessment the development of decision support systems with multiple criteria and under uncertainty, land use planning in chemical sites, assessment of human factors for plant safety enhancement and quantified occupational risk assessment. This contribution has been achieved through the participation to over thirty R&D projects partially or totally funded by third party sources including the framework programmes of the European Commission, other international funding organizations, Greek ministries and companies. SRISL is one of the main consultants to the Greek Government in matters related with the safety of industrial installations having the potential to cause a major accident and subject to the SEVESO European Directive. In this capacity the SRISL has either reassessed or analyzed the safety of almost the totality of the Greek industry subject to the SEVESO directive handling LPG, fuels, LNG, ammonia, chlorine and explosives. Recently research and development has been focused in the following areas: a) Decision Support Systems for risk management and emergency response policy selection in major hazard accidents in nuclear and chemical installations, b) Safety enhancement in the process industry through the use of virtual reality tools c) Development of quantified risk models for occupational risks and tools for multicriteria optimization of occupational risk management strategies and d) Quantification of uncertainties in risk analysis.

 
 
   
 
 
Italian Workers' Compensation Authority (INAIL)
 
 

INAIL - The Italian Workers Compensation Authority – is a public body (11.000 employees, 8 billion € turnover, 3.7 million assured enterprises). It pursues several objectives: the reduction of accidents and the promotion of safety at work, the insurance of workers involved in risky activities; the re-integration in the labour market and in social life of work accident victims. Since 2010, INAIL has incorporated ISPESL, the Italian National Institute for Prevention and Safety at work, which is now the INAIL Technical – Scientific and research area.

The INAIL technical – scientific area (ex-ISPESL) employs some 1500 persons, including 200 scientists and 150 engineers. It has a large research centre in Monteporzio Catone, close Rome and a few smaller centres in North and South Italy. Researches are being conducted on Occupational Medicine, Hygiene, Safety Engineering and Risk Management. There are local branches in 35 major Italian cities which are in charge of inspections and certification of many working equipment, including cranes, lifting machines, ladders, scaffolds, pressure equipment, piping, boilers, washing machines, ATEX equipment, personal protective equipment. Local branches are also responsible for some activities like the control of major accident hazards in the framework of the Seveso Directive.  The research activities are based on a triennial research plan, which includes both medical and engineering matters. Engineering researches include non-destructive testing, human and organizational factors, personal protective equipment, new technology safety (nano, bio & green). The budget of the engineering projects in 2009-11 is about 15 million €, including 1,5 million € for external bodies. These funds are assigned to national universities and institutes by means of annual call for proposals. Research Activities are done in synergy with other INAIL activities, including the funding programs for improving safety of Italian enterprises.
 
   
 
 
Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO)
 
 

TNO Built Environment and Geosciences (TNO) is an independent, contract research organisation in the Netherlands which employs around 4000 employees. TNO is established by law. TNO is active in many fields covered in seven themes: Healthy living, Mobility, Built Environment, Energy, Industrial Innovation, Defense-Safety&Security, and Information Society. The mission of TNO is to increase the innovative power of the government and private companies. In order to achieve this, TNO develops new knowledge, models and technology and advises both governments and companies how to apply this knowledge and technology in their policy making or in conducting process - or product improvements.

The contribution to the SAF€RA project will be delivered by the team Safety for Industrial and Built Environment and the team Safe & Healthy Business. These teams of over 50 professionals in safety, risk analysis and organisational aspects perform numerous projects for industry and government, nationally as well as internationally, to assess and quantify risks of industrial installations and to advise companies to improve their installations and organisations. TNO is since the early eighties of the previous century involved in the development of models and methods for risk assessment. These models and methods form the basis for the Dutch External Safety Policy and are often used as examples in other countries.

TNO as a whole is involved in more than 50 EU FW projects. On Safety, TNO was actively involved in EU projects like Aramis, HYApproval, Shaperisk, RIskman and Virthualis. In many EU projects, TNO acts as the coordinator of the project.

 
 
   
 
 
Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment (IenM)
 
 

The Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment (IenM) is responsible for various policy issues and legislation, including transport, the environment, land use planning, and flood protection. The Environmental Safety and Risk Management Directorate is in charge of making risk management policies and legislation in the field of industrial risk (third party risk), environmental and health aspects of dangerous substances (REACH) and nanotechnology, as well as genetically modified organisms. It commissions research at various institutions and universities to ensure that policy is based on sound scientific knowledge and new insights.

One of the fora to coordinate this research is the Strategic Research Platform on third party risk associated with the production, storage, transportation and use of dangerous substances. Various organisations participate in this platform, such as universities, research institutes, government bodies, and industry. Important issues that have been identified for new of further research are for example emerging risks and physical effect modelling, but also developing new policy instruments such as decision making tools.

The Directorate is responsible for the implementation of the Seveso II Directive as far as land use planning and environmental aspects and third party risks are concerned. It participates in the Commission of Competent Autorities (CCA) for this directive. The other Ministry involved with the Seveso II Directive is that of Social Affairs and Employment (SZW), responsible for occupational health and safety, also a member of the CCA.

 
   
 
 
Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment (MINSZW)
 
 

The directorate for Health and Safety at Work of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment (MINSZW) promotes safety and health at work. The main aims of the Ministry’s occupational safety and health policy are to prevent absence due to illness and occupational disability, and to encourage timely reintegration. The government sets goals to extend the labour productivity and reduce the failure of illness and disability. Safety and healthy work circumstances contribute to the prevention of occupational accidents at work. The directorate also aims at controlling companies dealing with major-accident hazards involving dangerous substances, which have large consequences for the environment and society.

The directorate for Health and Safety at Work encourages research that is executed by the research institutions TNO and RIVM. Both research institutions work independent but in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment.

At the moment the directorate for Health and Safety at Work facilitates the ‘Action plan Work Safety’. The aim of the plan is to reduce occupational risks and accidents and contribute to a safe work environment. The approach is based on intervention in working culture of employers and employees. Together with social partners the department stimulates companies to participate in the action plan.

Based on 25.000 investigated incidents by the labour inspectorate, the Ministry commissioned work to develop the incident analysis system, Storybuilder and the quantitative risk tool WebORCA.
 
 
   
 
 
Rijksinstituut voor Volksgezondheid en Milieu – National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM)
 
 

The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) is a recognised leading centre of expertise in the fields of health, nutrition and environmental protection, working mainly for the Dutch government. It also shares knowledge with governments and supranational bodies around the world. The results of research, monitoring, modelling and risk assessment are used to underpin policy on public health, food, safety and the environment. It employs over 1500 employees, many of whom work in multidisciplinary fields.

Centre for External Safety (CEV)

CEV started as a separate unit in RIVM 2002 after the Enschede Fireworks disaster to work as a National centre of expertise on external safety issues to advise and support competent authorities (municipalities, provinces, ministries, inspectorate, fire department). It employs 18 academics working on different subjects mainly concerned with the development of methods to calculate risks of dangerous goods (production, storage or transport) towards human beings and the environment.

 
   
 
 
Central Institute for Labour Protection - National Research Institute (CIOP-PIB)
 
 

The Central Institute for Labour Protection (CIOP) is Poland's main research institution, comprehensively dealing with the problems of improving working conditions in accordance with human psychophysical abilities. The main aim of the Institute’s research and development works is the building scientific foundations to create a system for preventing occupational hazards. The Institute’s main activities in the field of safety and health include research and implementation work, standardization, determination of exposure limits, testing and certification of machinery and manufacturing devices, personal and collective protective equipment; certification of the competence of personnel and educational bodies active in the field of OSH, promotion, implementation and certification of OSH management systems; consultations, education and  training in OSH as well as promotion, information and publishing activity in this area, and international cooperation with OSH institutes and international organizations.

CIOP-PIB is the coordinator and the main performer of the national research programme (established by the Council of Ministers in 2007) on "Improvement of safety and working conditions”. The first phase of the programme covered the period 2008-2010 with a budget ca. € 25 million. This programme is being carried out in cooperation with 20 Polish research institutions in this field. It consists of 72 research projects and 136 tasks of so-called "state services" related to implementation of the national policy on OSH. The strategic objective of the Programme is to develop and implement innovative organizational and technical solutions, focused at improvement of human resources, new products, technologies, management methods and systems, aimed at achieving a significant reduction of occupational accidents and diseases in Poland as well as related economic and social losses.

Within the framework of the above Programme, eight research projects concerning the control of major accidents and explosive atmospheres hazards have been carried out by CIOP-PIB and by several research institutes and universities. The general aim of this group of projects is to develop advanced tools for create safety management systems to minimize the risks of major accidents and explosive situations and to mitigate the potential consequences of such events for people, the environment and property. The topics of these research projects are the following:

  • Computer-aided risk assessment for establishments posing a major industrial accident hazard and assessment of occupational risk facing workers at workplaces potentially at risk from explosive situations;
  • Developing analytic methods and tools for computer-aided management of functional safety under a system of the creation of protection layers for industrial facilities at increased risk;
  • Development of a safety management system at establishments at risk of major industrial accidents falling outside the lower-tier or upper-tier establishments;
  • Developing a human and environmental risk management system related to the transportation of dangerous chemicals by rail;
  • Developing a risk management programme related to the transport of dangerous chemicals by road;
  • Risk assessment methods for the workstations potentially at risk from explosions and developing a model explosion-safety document;
  • Method of detection of electrostatic discharge in the working environment for prevention of flammable atmosphere ignition in explosion endangered zones;
  • Procedures for major accident prevention and mitigation of their consequences – development of tools supporting the realisation of the procedures, and preparation and assessment of the documents required (development and maintenance of the Internet service).
 
 
   
 
 
Ministry of Education Science and Technological Development (MESTD)
 
 

Ministry of Education Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia consists of two parts: education and science. The main activities of the Sector of science are development and improvement of the research work in the function of the scientific, technological and industrial development; defining and realising policies and the Strategy of the Scientific and Technological Development; specialization of the scientific / research human resource; defining and realising innovation policies; supporting techno-companies; transfer of knowledge and technology in industry; development and improvement of the innovation system in the Republic of Serbia; regulations in the area of protection of and circulating the rights of intellectual property; development in the functionality system of the scientific and technological information and program for scientific and technological infrastructural development and defining and realising the programme of the EU integration.

Department for EU integration and international cooperation is engaged by the following administration affairs: international, scientific, technological, bilateral and multilateral cooperation, projects and programs of European Community in domains of scientific and technological researches; cooperation with organizations and agencies from United Nations system, cooperation with foreign scientific, government and non government organizations and associations, cooperation with our scientists and experts in Diaspora; preparations of programs for scientific and technical cooperation; making of the contracts, agreements, conventions and the other general acts with regard to the international scientific cooperation and other affairs in the Department’s competency.


 
   
 
 
Instituto Vasco de Seguridad y Salud Laborales (OSALAN)
 
 
 

The Basque Institute for Health and Safety at Work (OSALAN) is an independent body of the Basque Government assigned to the Department of Employment and Social Affairs with responsibility for handling occupational health and safety policies in the Basque Country. It was created by law in 1993 with the following objectives:

  • Promote better Health and Safety through safety, hygiene and environmental programmes.
  • Coordinate occupational health related actions.
  • Adapt to EU law by establishing information channels.
  • Provide companies with the means to manage health and safety.
  • Promote the implementation of systems that ensure a continuous improvement in occupational health.

It has a number of peculiar features as its actions extend to all branches of economic activity, including Public Administrative Bodies and Cooperatives; it promotes prevention among self-employed people and offers programme-based services. Its functions include the following:

  • Study the causes of occupational accidents and diseases and propose corrective measures.
  • Prepare, study and assess labour statistics
  • Establish an epidemiology surveillance system in accordance with the guidelines provided by the Department of Health.
  • Prepare and develop research programmes on safe methods and techniques.
  • Propose reforms to the technical aspects of health and safety at work and to ergonomic methods.
  • Conduct studies and prepare reports on specific jobs, work centres, raw materials...
  • Prepare reports for the Labour Department and other authorities on health and safety issues.
  • Schedule, organise and develop training plans.
  • Notify workers and employers of any knowledge and practices related to risk prevention and health improvement.
  • Develop inspections on safety levels in companies in general and in specific sectors, providing appropriate assistance.
  • Provide assistance and technical advice to businesses, workers, organisations...
  • Notify the labour authorities of any cases of serious and repeated infringement of safety standards in companies.
  • Provide advice and assess the performance of companies' technical health and safety bodies.
  • Study the adaptation of machinery, equipment, organisation systems... to workers' capabilities.
  • Study and monitor working conditions that may pose a risk during pregnancy and lactation periods, with a view to adapting them accordingly.
  • Monitor the health of workers to identify risk factors.
  • Authorise, inspect and oversee health monitoring tasks of different Prevention Services.

Osalan comprises a General Council which includes representatives from the Government and Social Agents (Business organisations and trade unions) and a Directorate General. The latter has the direct management of the body. It has three regional centres, one in each territory of the Basque Country, and its headquarters are at Camino de la Dinamita s/n 48903 Barakaldo Bizkaia.


 
 
   
 
 
Agency for Innovation and Development of Andalusia (IDEA)
 
 

Agency for Innovation and Development of Andalusia IDEA, is a new model of regional development agency, attached to the Regional Ministry for Economy, Innovation, and Science, which brings together the experience accumulated by the Instituto de Fomento de Andalucía (Andalucia Development Institute) and which marks out new ways in which to reach one consensual objective: to make Andalusia an avant-garde region in the field of the most advanced economies. Agency IDEA is the managing and executive organization of the policies of innovation and development of the Consejería de Economía, Innovación y Ciencia (Regional Ministry for Regional Ministry for Economy, Innovation, and Science), which takes as a reference, the strategies outlined in the Plan of Innovation and Modernization of Andalucía (PIMA) and has, as its final objective, the Second Modernization of Andalucia.

Agency IDEA is the organisation entrusted by the Regional Ministry for Economy, Innovation and Science to administer the Order of Incentives, which establishes the bases of the Programme of Incentives for the Innovation and Development of Business in Andalusia. The fundamental objective of this normative framework is to orientate, with clarity, the path of business modernization, giving priority to the projects that generate added value and promote innovation in products, services or systems as the best way to achieve competitiveness.

The programme budget in the period between 2009 and 2013 is 1500 million €. The human resources amount to approximately 336 employees.


 
   
 
 
Research Council of Norway (RCN)
 
 

The Research Council of Norway (RCN) is a national strategic and funding agency for research activities, and a chief source of advice on and input into research policy for the Norwegian Government, the central government administration and the overall research community.
An important objective is to ensure that Norway adequately invests in research and development (R&D) activity.

Cohesive strategic approach
The Research Council promotes a cohesive strategic approach to the establishment of new fields of research, the development of higher calibre research and the implementation of new initiatives to meet the needs of society.
It is the task of the Research Council to identify Norway’s research needs and recommend national priorities. Using targeted funding schemes, the Council helps to translate national research policy goals into action.

Structure and cooperation
The Research Council works to enhance financial and quality targets in Norwegian research and innovation activities. The Council also works to design a sound underlying structure for the research system and develop new forms of interaction between the research community, trade and industry and the public administration.
The Research Council provides a central meeting place for researchers, users of research and research funders and actively promotes the internationalisation of Norwegian research.


 
 
   
 
 
Finnish Work Environment Fund (FWEF)
 
 

Finnish Work Environment Fund (FWEF),

The purpose of the Finnish Work Environment Fund is to fund research and development work, which improves the working conditions and promotes the safety and productivity aspects of the working place activities.

 
   
 
 
The Spanish National Institute of Safety and Health at Work (INSHT)
 
 

The National Institute for Safety and Hygiene at Work (INSHT) (Instituto Nacional de Seguridad e Higiene en el Trabajo), founded in 1978, is the specialised scientific and technical body in the field of OSH of the Ministry of Employment and Social Security. INSHT comprises four National Centres, each one specialise in different fields of OSH research.

The mission of INSHT, as defined in the Spanish Occupational Risk Prevention Law, is the analysis and study of the health and safety conditions in the workplace, as well as their promotion and providing support for their improvement. To meet its objectives, it establishes the necessary cooperation with bodies of the Autonomous Communities (regions) and other State Administration bodies involved with health and safety at work, as well as with social partners.

FUNCTIONS AND ACTIVITIES

The INSHT has, among others, the following functions:

  • Concerning research, its primary mission is to analyse and study health and safety conditions at work, in order to determine the causes of occupational illnesses and injuries, and to recognise new and emerging occupational hazards to be able to prevent them. The INSHT also promotes and coordinates a health and safety at work research network of public institutes.
  • To provide the required specialised and differentiated technical support to public bodies, employers and employees organisations, as well as the necessary technical assistance in developing legal and technical regulations on the prevention of occupational risks, at both national and international level.
  • To promote awareness of occupational risk prevention, acting as a driving force, and carrying out training, information, research, study and dissemination activities in the field of occupational risk prevention.
  • To promote and support the integration of OSH training in all programs and educational levels, actively participating in specialised training in this field and developing support elements, training materials, and specialised documentation.

At international level, the INSHT collaborates with Governments and Institutions of other countries in the development of health and safety at work, and forms part of different European specialised networks – among others it is the National Reference Centre for Institutions of the European Union-.

In addition to those already mentioned, INSHT functions are any others which may be necessary for the achievement of its end goals and which may be assigned to it within the scope of its competencies.