, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 57–79

The keyboard blues: Modern technology and the rights and risks of people at work

  • Patricia Shipley

DOI: 10.1007/BF01174479

Cite this article as:
Shipley, P. AI & Soc (1995) 9: 57. doi:10.1007/BF01174479


Health and safety at work is a moral imperative, but the debates emphasise only the economic and legal sides. Drawing on case material from working with VDUs and other forms of modern technology it is shown that loss of control over their immediate work processes can be stressful and potentially harmful to responsible operators. Autonomy and freedom in work process control enhances the power that workers have to protect their health. It is suggested that unquestioned divisive and dualistic practices at workplaces are a potent and unnecessary reason for this problem.


Health and safety rights at workHealth and safety risksUK occupational health provisionsVDUsModern technologyPaced workRepetitive strain injuryStressCopingControlDivision of labourDualismInterpersonal relationsEthical imperative

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patricia Shipley
    • 1
  1. 1.Stress Research & Control Centre, Department of Organisational Psychology, Birkbeck CollegeUniversity of LondonLondonUK