Knowledge base on occupational safety and health

    The ILO identifies, collects, analyses and shares knowledge and information in support to the ILO policy agenda in occupational safety and health (OSH). It aims at enhancing the relevancy and quality of knowledge products and services and building strong partnerships with knowledge related agencies, institutions and organizations.

    From 2015, the ILO will aim at achieving new strategic objectives, which are intimately linked and complement each other:

  • Mobilize and facilitate sharing of knowledge and information
  • Enhance knowledge and information networking activities
  • Build institutional capacity to acquire and use knowledge and information
  • Observe and report on the development and sharing of knowledge globally

Key resources

  1. Network

    Database on OSH agencies, institutions and organizations

    Global database

    A new web portal INTEROSH is a global database on OSH Knowledge Agencies, Institutions and Organizations (AIOs) aiming to enhance knowledge and information sharing around the world, and support the development of new collaboration between AIOs on priority topics of interest.

  1. Online edition

    Encyclopaedia of Occupational Health and Safety

    Knowledge platform

    The Encyclopaedia website is a cutting-edge global knowledge platform for sharing OSH information and good practices. This online book of facts and knowledge is also connected to a wide variety of ILO and third party OSH information resources, such as standards and regulations, databases, and guides. New arrangements for the continuing update and extension of the content are currently being established.

  2. Legislation

    Database on Occupational Safety and Health Legislation

    Global database

    The database compiles the wealth of legislation in OSH and serves as a snapshot of the current major national legislative requirements around the globe. Constituents and interested parties are provided with a source of reliable and targeted information for making educated decisions. The compilation allows countries to learn from more advanced laws and criteria and it facilitates undertaking comparative research on specific indicators. Policy briefs and fact sheets can be developed based on the available data. The database can also be used as a tool for monitoring and mapping large-scale trends.

  3. Safe use of chemicals

    International Chemical Safety Cards (ICSC)

    Data sheets

    The cards are data sheets intended to provide essential safety and health information on chemicals in a clear and concise way. The primary aim of the cards is to promote the safe use of chemicals in the workplace. The main target users are workers and those responsible for occupational safety and health.

  4. E-tools - OSH phone apps

    Checkpoints app series

    The Checkpoints app series is a new digital tool for improving occupational safety and health in the workplace. Users can explore illustrated descriptions of each checkpoint and create interactive checklists tailored to their workplace. Each app also includes best practice recommendations for taking action and implementing effective improvements.

  5. Terminology

    Occupational Safety and Health Thesaurus


    This information system on OSH terminology represents a source of terms used to index content available on various knowledge and information platforms, such as bulletins and databases. It can also supply "meta" tags for indexing webpages. Its system of facet codes has been used to organize OSH libraries.

  6. Terminology

    Occupational Safety and Health Glossary


    The glossary includes aproximately 2,600 specialised terms and expressions in five languages and is aimed at translators, interpreters and safety and health practitioners. The alphabetical list  features terms from diverse subject areas such as engineering, medicine, law, physics, chemistry, and psychology.

  7. Occupational hazards

    Hazard Datasheets on Occupations (HDO)

    Data sheets

    A multipurpose information resource containing information on the hazards, risks and notions of prevention related to a specific occupation. The datasheets are intended for those professionally concerned with health and safety at work.

  8. Literature

    CISDOC - Archived bibliographic database

    Archived database

    CISDOC contains more than 70,000 citations of documents in many languages from various countries that deal with occupational accidents and diseases as well as ways of preventing them. The types of referenced documents are: laws and regulations, chemical safety data sheets, training materials, articles from periodical publications, books and standards, etc.

Standards and other instruments

  1. The ILO has adopted more than 40 standards specifically dealing with OSH, as well as over 40 Codes of Practice. Nearly half of the ILO instruments deal directly or indirectly with safety and health at work.

  2. Conventions and Recommendations

    International labour standards are legal instruments drawn up by the ILO's constituents. Standards on OSH provide essential tools for governments, employers, and workers to establish sound prevention, reporting and inspection practices and to provide for maximum health and safety at work.

  3. Codes of Practice

    Codes of Practice set out practical guidelines for public authorities, employers' and workers' organizations, enterprises, practitioners and specialized bodies. They provide guidance on safety and health at work in certain economic sectors, on protecting workers against certain hazards, and on specific OSH measures.

  4. Guidelines