Exploiting opportunities - identifying risks
Assistance systems, robots, artificial intelligence - digitalisation is bringing about far-reaching changes in the world of work. Our research is helping to identify the opportunities and risks of these developments, enabling policymakers and organisations to take well-informed decisions.
In the digitalised world of work, display screen equipment (DSE) work involves far more than carrying out tasks on the classic PC. There are many fields where it is common for workers to depend on equipment like laptops and mobile end devices. One requirement is to examine the transferability of existing design knowledge in this field to new types of work situations.
Today the findings of digital ergonomics and its design tools are already supporting the careful planning of products and work systems. Shortcomings can consequently be identified at an early stage and ergonomic improvements implemented.
Meanwhile innovative technologies hold out opportunities to design the world of work more inclusively for people with disabilities - whether by relying on general technologies like smartphones with appropriate apps or by introducing specially developed applications or even collaborative robots. Physical work assistance technologies, such as robot systems and exoskeletons, can support people when performing physical work tasks. Research into the best ways of designing these systems and human-centred approaches to their deployment is therefore gaining in significance.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is not just having impacts on products and work equipment, but also on the design of employees’ activities and workplaces. Apart from the economic potential inherent in AI, attention will increasingly have to be paid to human-centred work design in this context as well.