The Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) is a governmental research institute directly responsible to the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS). Its main task is to provide scientifically based advice to the BMAS in all matters of occupational safety and health (OSH) and of the humane design / organisation of working conditions. At the interface between science and politics, BAuA aims to transfer science-based knowledge to policy makers, corporate practice and the general public.
BAuA’s research concentrates on a strategy-based programme research and systematic activities for the predictive scientific analysis of relevant trends and developments within the framework of OSH (“forecast of emerging risks”). Strategic research topics are:
- the effects of new technologies on safety and health at work;
- mental workload against the background of new types of work;
- the multifactoral genesis of work-related diseases;
- the safe use of biological agents and chemicals, including advanced materials.
BAuA’s development activities tackle contemporary questions of policy, the formulation of the legal framework in the European and national contexts, corporate practice and new knowledge gained through research.
The BAuA’s core task is to provide scientific advice in matters of policy. For this purpose it provides the governmental departments with scientifically sound and purposefully prepared knowledge to enable them to take decisions with respect to political action. Additionally, BAuA participates in the opinion-forming process in the wider society in all matters of OSH as well as the humane organisation of work.
BAuA has been assigned sovereign duties which arise from the government’s protective duty with respect to citizens or the environment. The major elements are: enforcement of provisions under chemicals legislation, support for the authorities responsible for market surveillance and the information and notification obligations in the area of product safety.
Knowledge transfer and communication
Transfer is one of BAuA’s most important aims. It includes the demand- and practice-oriented provision of legal regulations and science-based methods in the form of practical guidelines for companies and consulting institutions, the preparation of the subject matter in a manner appropriate to the target group and the creation of suitable distribution channels.
Educational and knowledge transfer – DASA
As an interactive educational institution, the German Occupational Safety and Health Exhibition (DASA) provides a didactic experience and learning venue at which preventive notions and actions are imparted.
With its method of informal and non-formal learning, its teaching expertise covers mainly orientation knowledge as well as knowledge relating to identity and action.