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Research on Demographic Change

Entire sectors need to prepare for an ageing and shrinking labour force

The working world is strongly affected by demographic change. It is therefore necessary to create suitable working conditions for older workers and to maintain their working capacity.

The thematic field "Healthy ageing at work" is about identifying and evaluating long-term effects, side effects and interactions of work-specific strains and demands. In addition, the opportunities and risks of work regarding health, physical and cognitive performance are explored. Furthermore, with the extension of working life, on-going monitoring of working capacity is an important new task.

The Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) synthesises the results of the respective research projects in a target group-specific manner and makes them available to partners such as occupational physicians, safety experts or consultants as well as multiplicators.

Three of BAuA's departments are conducting research on demographic change

Department 1 "Changing World of Work" deals with the preservation of employability and ability to work during the entire professional career. In doing so, the focus is on the work-accompanying acquisition of skills as well as the testing of innovative prevention alliances. Furthermore, Department 1 supports various projects and networks and thus ensures the transdisciplinary mission of the departmental research institute, e.g. as part of the Initiative New Quality of Work (INQA).

Department 2 "Products and Work Systems" focuses on the design of technical working conditions. In doing so, risks for the employees are to be minimised, taking into accout aspects of human-oriented work design. In this process, technical-organisational work structures, work processes as well as the work environment are examined and evaluated as a whole.

Department 3 "Work and Health" focuses on the health and performance of employees. In particular, more complex associations of health-promoting and health-damaging conditions are examined and made accessible to holistic prevention approaches. The department develops concepts on mental load and takes into account occupational histories and new forms of work.

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