Program Overview

The World Congress is a crucial global forum for the exchange of information and opinion by experts in safety and health, representatives of companies and employees, decision-makers from government and public authorities, social partners, and anyone active in the area of occupational safety and health.

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Technical Sessions and Symposia

The Congress will feature six technical sessions and 21 symposia with over 150 global experts on key OSH topics and trends. Details can be found here.


The International Safety and Health Virtual Exhibition will feature exhibitors showcasing their latest products, innovations and developments in safety and health. There will be opportunities for delegates and exhibitors to engage with an expanded global network through text and video chat and Braindates. The Exhibition will be open for the duration of the Congress.

Interested in becoming an exhibitor? Click here.

Poster Presentations 

The Congress will feature a virtual poster exhibition where delegates can explore posters and video narrations linked to the Congress main topics. Delegates will be able to interact live with the poster presenters to learn more during the Congress.  

Braindate Networking 

One of the strengths of the Congress is the opportunity for global networking. Through the Congress platform, delegates will be able to easily connect with colleagues from around the world in real time. 

Braindates are dynamic conversations between individuals or small groups that delegates book through the Congress platform. Here is how it works. Delegates post discussion topics on the online “Topic Market”. Delegates browse the Topic Market and choose the Braindate that interest them. Delegates can also schedule a time to meet in a one-on-one Braindate. When it’s time for the Braindate, either in a small group or one-on-one, delegates join via video call right from the World Congress platform.  

A Braindate is a great way to meet fellow delegates and interact more closely with the material from Congress sessions. 

Youth Spotlight 

Building on the SafeYouth@Work Congress held in Singapore in 2017, the Youth Spotlight is a lively, interactive session designed to spur global action to improve occupational safety and health (OSH) for young workers. This session will bring together youth champions around the world, policy makers and experts to reflect on how to engage youth into prevention and to integrate their voice and vision in building back better. It will also explore young workers’ expectations from institutional partners to continue supporting them in promoting OSH. 

  The Youth Spotlight is also closely connected with other programme elements including the International Media Festival for Prevention, Braindates and keynote speeches where OSH for young workers will be highlighted, discussed and advanced.  

Global Forum for Work Injury Insurance

The Global Forum for Work Injury Insurance provides a platform for representatives of occupational accident insurance or workers’ compensation schemes to discuss a number of global challenges that occupational accident insurance systems are facing today, such as the impact of technological progress in the areas of prevention and rehabilitation. This platform will open the opportunity to exchange information, to present good practice approaches and to formulate joint positions. 

In Europe, Asia and North America there are already regular meetings and conferences at the regional level that have begun to link with each other. Complementing the activities of ISSA Technical Commission on Insurance against Employment Accidents and Occupational Diseases and the Special Commission on Prevention, this integrated platform provides an added global value for occupational accident insurance systems. 

The Global Forum will be accessible for regional accident insurances associations and fora, international bodies and ISSA member institutions. 

Protecting the health and safety of essential workers in emergencies: lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic

More details to come. 

Congress Languages 

The official languages of the Congress are English, French, Spanish and German. There will be simultaneous translation in these four languages during the opening and closing ceremonies, plenary sessions and technical sessions.

Congress Themes

Prevention in the Connected Age

Global solutions to achieve safe and healthy work for all

The world today is highly connected. This connectivity has been enabled and accelerated through mechanisms such as global supply chains and technology allowing for the rapid exchange of data, knowledge, processes and practices that create challenges and opportunities for protecting the safety and health of workers.

The Challenges include governance and regulation, the roles and responsibilities of workers, employers, designers, suppliers, importers and a growing number of other actors, to “systems-based” approaches to prevention, and emerging work-related hazards, risks and new forms of work organization.

The Opportunities include opportunities for greater collaboration bringing together diverse groups of actors to share knowledge, drive innovation and engage in collective action on global solutions to what are now global challenges.

The World Congress is a crucial global forum to explore the implications of these rapid changes and to build a world-wide vision and community for sustainable prevention.

Main Topics

The Congress Program will be dynamic and interactive, showcasing experts, thought leaders and innovators from around the globe covering the following main topics:

1. Innovations in Addressing Longstanding Safety and Health Challenges
While significant progress has been made to reduce the incidence of work-related injury and disease, traditional hazards in high-risk sectors continue to exist. In addition, workers, including new and young workers continue to be at greater risk. Identifying innovations in tackling such longstanding challenges in workers’ health protection will be a focus of the World Congress. The Congress will present key advances in protecting workers in highly hazardous occupations and industries around the globe and include strategies for safely integrating young and new workers into the workplace.

2. Implications of the Changing World of Work for Occupational Safety and Health
Digitalisation, globalisation, demographic change and the increasing flexibility of work are trends that are currently shaping the world of work. This has brought new forms of work and work organization, and new challenges and opportunities for prevention. The Congress will consider the implications of the changing world of work for workers, employers, policy-makers and regulators, researchers, and OSH professionals. It will explore the opportunities to take action on what are now global challenges.

3. Advancing a Culture of Prevention
The global movement to embrace a mindset that all injuries and ill-health arising from work are preventable requires a paradigm and culture shift across all aspects of working life. Injuries at work and occupational diseases are neither predetermined nor unavoidable – they always have causes. By building a strong prevention culture, these causes can be eliminated and work related physical and mental harm and occupational diseases can be prevented.