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Since the beginning of the 1990s numerous mega-scale global changes have occurred in work life and they are continuing at an accelerating rate into the 2000 Millennium. In addition to the changes at the global level, we also see some changes at the national level in virtually all countries and at micro-level in the local communities and enterprises. Simultaneously, economic structures are changing so that services become the most important sector of economy, industry declines slightly and primary production very substantially, as has happened continuously since the 1950s in all Western European countries. Many of these trends have an impact on occupational safety and health, its conditions of operation, content, methods, competence demands and financing of occupational safety and health activities. Some of these trends are described here, and their important consequences on occupational safety and health are discussed.
Some statistics are used in this book, but we have not focussed particularly on them nor evaluated all or as many statistics as possible. In several contexts where we have mentioned data and statistics they are mainly from northern European countries. They serve as examples to underline problems, which repeatedly are similar in other countries as well. Often the data-backgrounds are different, even when one deals with the very same task (for example, what are accidents-at-work-to-be-reported). Making comparisons is thus difficult, and often the available data are limited on a global level.
KeywordsCorporate Governance Precautionary Principle Global Reporting Initiative Risk Governance United Nations Global Compact
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