NIOSH has published its National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA), a partnership program to stimulate innovative research and workplace interventions. In combination with other initiatives, the products of this program are expected to reduce the occurrence of injuries and illnesses at work.
Diverse parties collaborate to identify the most critical issues in workplace safety and health and develop research objectives for addressing those needs.
The agenda provides “guidance to investigators concerning where information is lacking and what gaps need to be addressed in future research and other actions.” It also contains six objectives, mainly focused on changes in the sector brought about by investments in new technology. The objectives are:
- Reduce the burden of acute and chronic occupational illnesses, injuries and fatalities in manufacturing by enhancing knowledge of occupational safety and health hazards and their effects, and developing effective interventions to reduce exposure to known occupational safety and health hazards;
- Improve surveillance of work-related hazards, exposures, and illnesses in the manufacturing industry;
- Examine emerging risks from new technologies and explore ways in which new technologies can advance occupational safety and health in manufacturing.
- Improve occupational safety and health for workers in non-traditional employment arrangements;
- Advance capacity-building and educational efforts in manufacturing; and
- Develop mechanisms for effective translation of research into practice in the manufacturing sector.
NORA councils comprise people from universities, businesses, professional societies, government agencies and worker organizations.