The International Congress for Occupational Safety and Occupational Medicine (A+A) has been the most important congress for safety and health at work – since the beginning of the 1950s. Celebrating its 35th anniversary this year it will feature a changed structure but be held in parallel with A+A 2017 again. Also remaining unchanged is the high-calibre line-up of 350 experts from the fields of politics, research and health and safety practice who will deliver talks on societal developments, planned reforms in national and European policy, technical and organizational innovations as well as current scientific findings. From 17 to 20 October the Federal German Association for Occupational Safety and Health (Basi) as the organizer of the congress will welcome to the tune of 5,500 visitors to more than 50 lecture series at CCD Congress Center Düsseldorf Süd.
This year the International Congress for Occupational Safety and Occupational Medicine along with the leading trade fair for Safety, Security and Health at Work will already be opened on the eve of A+A 2017, Monday, 16 October, at the Düsseldorf venue “Classic Remise”. Guests at the opening gala will be welcomed by the Chairwomen of Basi (the Federal German Association for Occupational Safety and Health) Sonja König, the President of the A+A advisory board Klaus Bornack and Martin Temple, Chair of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in his capacity as a representative of the A+A partner country Great Britain. The opening will be rounded off by a keynote presented by Prof. Dr. Armin Nassehi of the Institute for Sociology at the LMU Munich.
The renowned “Deutscher Arbeitsschutzpreis” (German Health and Safety at Work Prize) will be presented at a separate event as a key component of the Congress on Tuesday afternoon. It honours the best technical and organizational health and safety solutions for small and large companies.
New Structure and Special Events
With the opening ceremony brought forward by one day, the complete first day of the A+A Congress is now available for expert events. On the first three A+A days these focus entirely on safety, health and ergonomics while the last day – Friday, 20 October – will come with a “Focus on Professions”. Lectures will revolve around issues of education and the cooperation between various professions in health and safety as well as presentations of health & safety at work as an attractive education and career option.
Also new: the event series “Praxis Interaktiv“ with practical approaches for the further development of basic concepts and themes for safety at the workplace such as hazard assessment or health promotion in the workplace (BGF).
Focal Points and Overriding Aspects
Overriding focal themes of the A+A Congress 2017 include events on prevention culture and digitalization. Alongside the “Arbeiten 4.0“ (Work 4.0) theme covered in the “Industrie 4.0” (Industry 4.0) event, assistance systems for health and safety and human-robot collaboration will be centre stage. Another central theme will be carcinogenic hazardous substances such as asbestos, which are featured under the motto “Kampf dem Berufskrebs” (Fighting Occupational Cancer) as part of an EU-wide campaign.
Specific sectors and/or professions are covered at the A+A Congress 2017 with focal sessions – such as offices with a special attention to the design of open-plan offices. The construction sector as well as public service will also be addressed specifically. Furthermore, there will be a separate “Forum Arbeitsschutzverwaltung” (OSH Management Forum).
Thursday, 19 October 2017, sees the first 1-day event held on the theme of “Disabled Employees’ Representation and Prevention”. Disabled Employees’ Representatives are a new group of visitors to A+A. The event, which was specifically designed in response to the current inclusion debate, will deal with the newly adopted “Bundesteilhabegesetz” (German Participation Act), the implementation of the UN-Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities and especially with accessibility as a central theme for health and safety.
Forming another focal theme will be the events “Electromagnetic Fields (EMF)”, “Biomaterials”, “Noise” and “Optical Radiation”. Under the heading “Biologically Effective Lighting” the new lighting concepts adapted to the human day-night rhythm will be discussed.
Twelve lecture series of the A+A Congress will have German-English simultaneous interpretation. The A+A Congress will be accompanied by the high-calibre Conference of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Forum of the International Social Security Association.