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Occupational Health Research Group

Being located in the School of Medical and Health Sciences provides an opportunity for the group of certified occupational hygienists to collaborate in areas of biomarker research and the integration of health surveillance and exposure data.

Our injury prevention research is conducted in association with industry and government agencies. Our researchers, certified and experienced safety and emergency management professionals are developing new models to understand effective management systems which will assist organisations analyse and evaluate their performance.

The research

Within the Occupational Health Research Group there is a specialism concerning the prevention of workplace injuries, incidents and exposure. This research group aims to:

  • Develop innovative processes to assist organisations of all sizes and types to manage and evaluate injury risk to an acceptable level
  • Assist organisations develop injury prevention strategies
  • Develop research protocols for the accurate determination of worker exposure profiles
  • Integrate environmental (exposure) and medical surveillance data
  • Develop laboratory based protocols to validate Australian occupational exposure standards

Current projects include:

  • Developing risk modelling processes
  • Developing an injury risk alarm to warn when risk exceeds certain levels
  • Developing training materials to enable the whole of an organisation to manage risk to an acceptable level
  • A survey tool to assess leadership risk management effectiveness
  • Development of risk analysis processes
  • Evaluation of organisations readiness for the WHS (Resources) Act
  • Establishing a due diligence process in a multi-national organisation
  • The impact of the economic downturn on safety performance
  • Leadership, legislation and prevention of injuries
  • Developing risk profiles to manage operational injury risk
  • An evaluation of VET Help on the quality of safety practitioner training
  • Evaluation of organisational culture using safety as an indicator
  • Real world attenuation of full-block generic ear plugs
  • Keeping English-as-a-second-language  speakers safe on Australian construction sites
  • Using workplace incident data to predict injury risk
  • Certification of safety professionals
  • Using the Internet of Things and multiple sources of data to estimate risk (with Associate Professor Adam Osserian: ECU School of Engineering)
  • Education of leadership teams to manage organisational injury risk (with Professor Peter Standen and Dr Janice Redmond: ECU School of Business)
  • Bio-aerosols exposures and respiratory disease in the dairy industry
  • Coal Miners Pneumoconiosis
  • Heat Stress: Reduction of Core Body Temperature
  • Is there a synergistic ototoxic effect of noise and welding fume?

The following PhD research projects are being conducted:

  • Design and evaluation of a construction industry fatality prevention process
  • The role of leadership in military organisations
  • Fatality and serious injury prevention in high risk workplaces
  • Does facial physiognomy predict an occupational safety and health message outcomes?


If you would like to support us or for more information.

Associate Professor Jacques Oosthuizen
Telephone: (61 8) 6304 5876

Dr Marcus Cattani
Telephone: (61 8) 6304 2346

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