Perspectives on the future.

K. Ringen, A. Englund, L. Welch, J. L. Weeks, J. L. Seegal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


There is a growing trend toward new forms of labor-management cooperation, through negotiated agreements involving job-site safety and health, workers' compensation, and preventive medicine (see chapter 14). These developments are likely to change safety and health in the industry. At the same time, they provide opportunities for practitioners and researchers in occupational safety and health. If we can venture to express a professional wish, it would be to find answers to the following: How can we, as the professions concerned with the well being of workers, help preserve the characteristics of construction work that are positive while reducing the aspects of the industry's functioning that are so deleterious to health? How do we preserve the crafts with their fostering of self-esteem: through individual freedom on the job, team work, or empowerment? Meanwhile, how do we reduce the destructive patterns of work, not just on the work site, but also involving the pressures and lifestyle associated with intermittent and uncertain employment? The rewards for safety and health professionals in the construction industry are immediate and striking. Whether through the practice of safety and health or through research, results can be measured in short order. That is a professional benefit afforded by few other industries. To structure occupational safety and health programs for construction workers, the safety and health professions need to engage in the labor-management processes that are changing the industry. In construction, it is not enough to think about what needs to be done in individual workplaces. In construction, we must think industry-wide, because that is how workers are employed.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)445-451
Number of pages7
JournalOccupational Medicine - State of the Art Reviews
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1995
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Ringen, K., Englund, A., Welch, L., Weeks, J. L., & Seegal, J. L. (1995). Perspectives on the future. Occupational Medicine - State of the Art Reviews, 10(2), 445-451.