August 2021

The last 12 months have been busy for the OHS Body of Knowledge. Since October last year we have published three new chapters and updated a five chapters with a further eight active projects.


The new chapters are:


3 The Generalist OHS Professional: International and Australian perspectives 

Authored by Pam Pryor, David Proven, Tristan Casey and Xiaowen Hu

This chapter should be essential reading for all OHS professionals. It examines the status of OHS as a profession from both an international and Australian perspective. It presents results of recent Australian research on the professional identity of OHS professionals and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the experiences of OHS professionals and the status of the profession. If offers a view of the future for OHS professionals and practical suggestions for improving the organisational experiences of generalist OHS professionals.


6 Global Concept Health

Authored by David Beaumont


Along with ‘work’ and ‘safety’, ‘health’ is one of the global concepts of OHS practice. This new chapter explains how the concept of health has expanded to include psychological health as well as physical health. It differentiates between the biomedical model that defines health negatively as ‘absence of disease’ and the biopsychosocial model that inspires positive health, linkage of ‘health’ and ‘wellbeing,’ and replacement of the traditionally dominant safety paradigm with a holistic health paradigm inclusive of safety. It provides a conceptual model of workplace health that OHS professionals can adapt to their organisational circumstances and draws on the workplace impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic to illustrate application of the model.


10.1 The Organistion

Authored by Debra Burlington and Michael Griffiths


Generalist OHS professionals need to work within organisations and contribute to overall organisational goals rather than attempt to impose OHS change from outside the organisational context. This chapter discusses the complexity of organisations and the scope of relevant theory before exploring three ‘lenses’ – metaphorical, structural and integral–which OHS professionals can apply to assist their understanding of organisations.


We have also updated chapters on:

7 The Human as a biological system

18 Biological hazards

19 Psychosocial hazards

21 Bullying and violence

24 Ionising radiation.


There are a number of other chapters in progress (see Current projects) and some chapters from 2012 that we still have to be reviewed or rewritten.


There is a table on the website that lists the new and updated chapters and nature of the changes Link and the Guide to OHS BoK chapters – Key words and abstracts link can help in finding relevant chapters.


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