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Principle, process, performance or what? New approaches to OHS standards setting

Bluff, Liz; Gunningham, Neil

Description

In designing occupational health and safety (OHS) standards, it is vitally important to determine what kinds of measures are most likely to produce best policy outcomes, influence organisational behaviour and achieve genuine improvements in OHS performance, while being enforceable and able to be implemented at an acceptable cost. Crucial considerations in designing OHS standards that meet these criteria are the content and coverage of standards, the type of OHS standards, and the policy...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorBluff, Liz
dc.contributor.authorGunningham, Neil
dc.contributor.editorElizabeth Bluff
dc.contributor.editorNeil Gunningham
dc.contributor.editorRichard Johnstone
dc.date.accessioned2003-10-28
dc.date.accessioned2004-05-19T15:09:53Z
dc.date.accessioned2011-01-05T08:46:23Z
dc.date.available2004-05-19T15:09:53Z
dc.date.available2011-01-05T08:46:23Z
dc.date.created2003
dc.identifier.isbn1862875057
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/41219
dc.identifier.urihttp://digitalcollections.anu.edu.au/handle/1885/41219
dc.description.abstractIn designing occupational health and safety (OHS) standards, it is vitally important to determine what kinds of measures are most likely to produce best policy outcomes, influence organisational behaviour and achieve genuine improvements in OHS performance, while being enforceable and able to be implemented at an acceptable cost. Crucial considerations in designing OHS standards that meet these criteria are the content and coverage of standards, the type of OHS standards, and the policy framework within which standards are developed and implemented. These issues have major implications not only for regulators, duty holders and potential victims of work-related injury and disease, but also for the overall effectiveness of the regulatory regime. This paper examines these three aspects of OHS standards setting with the aim of developing approaches to standards setting that are capable of meeting OHS regulatory challenges in the 21st century. The particular focus of this paper is standards setting under OHS statutes, regulations and evidentiary standards (explained further in Section 4.5). Section 2 of the paper identifies major structural changes in the nature of work, responsibility and risk, which provide an important context within which standard setting for the early 21st century must take place. It then canvasses some of the challenges presented by the goals of providing comprehensive coverage of OHS risks, extending the influence of OHS regulation to all of the key parties contributing to OHS risks, and ensuring effective coverage of all those exposed to those risks. Section 3 examines the various types of standards that might be invoked to protect OHS, with reference to four main options available: specification, general duties, performance-based and systematic process/systems-based standards. In doing so, it aims to develop a clearer conceptualisation of types of standards, the distinctions between them, and their respective strengths and weaknesses. Section 4 identifies some considerable shortcomings of existing standard setting arrangements and proposes a substantially different mix of standards, which in combination would be more effective in achieving OHS objectives in the context of 21st century work and organisations. These initiatives are designed to stimulate systematic OHS management, to define OHS performance outcomes and targets more clearly, and to specify particular preventive measures, when required. Finally, the broader policy framework for OHS standards setting is briefly surveyed in Section 5. There are recognised challenges posed by concerns about: national consistency; the most appropriate forums and forms of representation to take account of a cross-section of interests; and the processes and criteria for decision-making in OHS standards setting. Some alternatives are canvassed as to how best to achieve a suitable policy framework for OHS standards setting.
dc.format.extent657557 bytes
dc.format.extent358 bytes
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/octet-stream
dc.language.isoen_AU
dc.publisherThe Federation Press
dc.relation.ispartofOHS Regulation for a Changing World of Work
dc.relation.isversionof1st Edition
dc.subjectOHS
dc.subjectoccupational health and safety
dc.subjectpolicy
dc.subjectstandards setting
dc.subjectregulations
dc.subjectevidentiary standards
dc.subjectspecification
dc.subjectgeneral duties
dc.subjectperformance-based standards
dc.subjectsystems-based standards
dc.titlePrinciple, process, performance or what? New approaches to OHS standards setting
dc.typeWorking/Technical Paper
local.description.refereedno
local.identifier.citationmonthjul
local.identifier.citationyear2003
local.identifier.eprintid2177
local.rights.ispublishedyes
dc.date.issued2003
local.identifier.absfor180119 - Law and Society
local.identifier.ariespublicationMigratedxPub16587
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationANU
local.contributor.affiliationNational Research Centre for OHS Regulation
local.citationWorking Paper 9
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage12
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage42
dc.date.updated2015-12-12T08:22:52Z
local.bibliographicCitation.placeofpublicationLeichhardt, NSW
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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