More than 110 leading experts from over 30 countries met at an international conference on strategies in occupational safety and health (OSH) at the BG Academy in Dresden from 28 – 30 January 2009. The goal of this conference, which was hosted by DGUV, was to attempt harmonising the enormous differences in OSH that exist throughout the world. The assembled experts discussed how these differences could be minimised. Special guests included representatives from the World Health Organisation (WHO), the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the International Social Security Association (ISSA), the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), the European Commission (EU COM), the International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH) and the International Association of Labour Inspection (IALI). The development, implementation and evaluation of national strategies was discussed with numerous experts from 30 countries, and the German federal government, the federal states, the accident insurance institutions and various professional associations against the backdrop of existing international safety and health strategies of WHO, ILO and the European Commission.
The conference, which all the participants agreed upon was a resounding success, focused primarily on comparative analyses and evaluations of national (Germany, Finland, UK, Croatia, Latvia, Russia, Slovenia, Spain, Hungary), European (EU COM) and global OSH-strategies (ILO, WHO). During numerous lectures, panel discussions, discussion fora and in-depth workshops the prominent experts analysed procedures and content for developing, implementing and evaluating national strategies. Representatives from the international social security association and European trade union and employers’ associations discussed the contributions they could make to implement existing strategies.
At the end of the strategy conference, the participants summarised the linkage of international and national strategies with the formula: "Think global – act local!" Further international conferences are planned to discuss in greater depth the core themes and approaches of strategies on occupational safety and health.