National Occupational Research Agenda for Manufacturing

The National Occupational Research Agenda for Manufacturing is intended to identify the knowledge and actions most urgently needed to identify occupational risk factors to prevent avoidable adverse health outcomes among workers. This Agenda provides a vehicle for interested parties to describe the most relevant issues, research gaps, and safety and health needs for the Manufacturing sector. It is meant to be broader than any one agency or organization.

The NORA Manufacturing Sector Council began work on this agenda at a day-and-a-half meeting in February 2017. Members discussed available and needed surveillance data, and provided expert input on the state of the field and the industry. Minutes were taken to record key themes (not verbatim comments). Breakout groups engaged in in-depth discussions on the needs for occupational safety and health research particular to the manufacturing industry, and for its dissemination, and directions for strategic planning. Following the meeting, the Council leadership analyzed the input received by identifying themes that emerged in the discussions, the level of agreement on each theme, the frequency in which they were mentioned, and intersections between them. Using this analysis, the Agenda was drafted and circulated to the Council for review. The Manufacturing Council finalized this version of the Agenda after considering public comments on the previous draft.

National Occupational Research Agenda for Manufacturing

The objectives are not presented in any particular or prioritized order. The numbering conventions are used only to facilitate the tracking of comments and implementation efforts.

Objective 1: Reduce the burden of acute and chronic occupational illnesses, injuries and fatalities in manufacturing by a) enhancing knowledge of occupational safety and health hazards and their effects, and b) developing effective interventions to reduce exposure to known occupational safety and health hazards.

  • Objective 1.1: Improve workplace safety to reduce traumatic injuries and fatalities in the manufacturing sector.
  • Objective 1.2: Contribute to the reduction of chronic diseases such as respiratory diseases, occupational cancer, cardiovascular disease, neurologic diseases and adverse reproductive outcomes.
  • Objective 1.3: Contribute to the reduction of occupational musculoskeletal disorders in manufacturing.
  • Objective 1.4: Contribute to the reduction of occupational hearing loss in manufacturing.

Objective 2: Improve surveillance of work-related hazards, exposures and illnesses in the manufacturing industry.

Objective 3: Examine emerging risks from new technologies and explore ways in which new technologies can advance occupational safety and health in manufacturing.

Objective 4: Improve occupational safety and health for workers in non-traditional employment arrangements.

Objective 5: Advance capacity-building and educational efforts in manufacturing.

Objective 6: Develop mechanisms for effective translation of research into practice in the manufacturing sector.


Page last reviewed: May 23, 2022