Digitalisation of the economy will fundamentally change the types of jobs available, forms of employment, where we work and how we work. This in turn may give rise to new and emerging OSH challenges that must be anticipated.Methods
EU-OSHA implemented a scenario-building ‘foresight on new and emerging OSH risks associated with ICT by 2025’, including on-line platforms, robotics and artificial intelligence, in two steps:Methods
Follow-up expert review papers and study were commissioned on challenges highlighted in the foresight.Results
92 Societal, Technological, Economic, Environmental and Political (STEEP) trends and drivers of change were identified and used to develop four scenarios on the future world of work and the new and emerging OSH risks associated with ICT. Each scenario presents different OSH challenges and opportunities. Expert review papers were prepared on crowdsourcing, robotics, 3-D printing, monitoring technologies and the e-retail sector. A follow-up study ‘Regulating the OSH impact of the online platform economy’ describes the related OSH risks, highlights the challenges for current regulatory approaches on OSH and presents examples of approaches being developed to meet these challenges.Discussion
The future can evolve in different directions shaped by the actions and decisions of various players taken today. EU-OSHA intends to inform and stimulate debate on the future of work among experts and policy-makers to ensure safe and healthy workplaces in the future.