Human Labour: Wellbeing in the Workplace

Dr. Purushothaman
January 21, 2014


On the 19th of December the Università del Sacro Cuore in Rome will host the convention "Human Labour: Wellbeing in the Workplace".
The convention, organized by the Istituto di Medicina del Lavoro of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore is meant to look into important issues regarding wellbeing in the workplace and industrial hygiene, and many important scholars and experts will participate in it. Among the conference speakers there will be: Antonio Bergamaschi and Nicola Magnavita of the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore of Rome, Sebastiano Bagnara of the Università di Sassari, Mario Galli of the Università di Cassino, Lucilla Livigni and Andrea Magrini of the Università Tor Vergata of Rome and Marko Elovainio of the University of Helsinki.
The convention starts from the consideration that the idea of work has changed a lot in last years, and from biblical curse it has turned not only into means of sustenance, necessary to make all those achievements (a family, economic welfare...) that are among everyone's desires, but also into an opportunity to make new experiences, meet people, broaden our knowledge and mind, and to play a role in carrying out social activities. To sum up, work has turned into a tool of enrichment, and not only economic enrichment. If we want this idea of work to be concretely realised, there are some necessary conditions that need to exist to favour work wellbeing. The work of men must be human and humanizing work means supporting workers' wellbeing, not only productivity.
However, there are some factors that could imperil welfare at work, from psychological and personal problems, problems deriving from the interaction with other workers (mobbing, uneasiness, maladjustment) to the problems caused by an unhealthy or risky workplace, where the physical health of workers is not assured, the necessary precautions are not taken and the basilar cleaning machines and equipment are not used. Accidents at work, which are reported by newspapers and television news as if it was a war bulletin, are only part of the risks that one can run into at work, and wellbeing at work depends also on a good industrial hygiene, which is aimed at discovering and defeating all those chemical (inorganic and organic dust, against which sweepers night be helpful, gases and vapours, carcinogenic agents, agents in an odourless environment), physical (noise, vibrations, radiations, lighting, ventilation) and biological factors, both inside and outside the workplace, that can compromise workers' health and wellbeing.
The convention organised in Rome will try to look into all these themes, and it will do that throughout a day which is expected to be very intense: the three sections which make up the congress will end up with a practical training, which will include group works with experts and the exposition of works. However, before that space will be given to very interesting debates: after the introductory speech by Bergamaschi, Iavicoli e Isolani, there will be the debate "Organizational justice and welfare in the workplace", which will close the first section. The second part of the convention will include the debates "The organization of work changes. New indicators and measurement tools" and "How the orientation of the legislator has changed", while the third section will discuss the themes "Organization of work and wellbeing" and "The competent doctor and workers' wellbeing".
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