October 30, 2018 / Elizabeth Pullen

Resources for Content Development

The Content Portfolio Advisory Group, or CPAG, is a team of volunteers that guides the AIHA Board and staff regarding the association’s body of content on industrial hygiene and occupational and environmental health and safety. Part of CPAG’s mission is to review proposals for new content, provide recommendations on funding requests for new content, and suggest topics for the AIHA Guideline Foundation’s research agenda. To fulfill this mission, CPAG oversees review of existing content and identifies emerging topics for which new content may be needed.

I’ve been involved with CPAG since it was formed in 2012 (originally, it was called the Content Portfolio Management Team). Now, as current CPAG chair, my goal is to ensure that AIHA’s volunteer groups are aware of the resources we’ve developed to help them as they plan their activities for next year.

The core of CPAG’s work is its identification of seven content priorities for AIHA. This year, CPAG created “dashboards” for each of these topics. The dashboards include vision statements (brief explanations of what AIHA wants to achieve in each topic area), a list of related initiatives, and an outline of actions that CPAG needs to take.

Below are brief explanations of each content priority with links to the appropriate dashboard (all links to PDF files):

  • Big data. Emerging tools and new sources of data offer new ways for IHs to analyze risks.
  • The business case for industrial hygiene. Industrial hygienists need skills to demonstrate their value and to convince top management to consider IH at the beginning stages of a project, not after implementation.
  • The changing work force. Increasingly, employees are engaging in nontraditional work arrangements such as gig work, contract work, telecommuting, and working for multiple employers.
  • Exposure banding. Given the huge number of chemicals in commerce, the relatively low number of occupational exposure limits for those chemicals, and the difficulty of updating OELs, exposure banding offers a robust way to manage risk.
  • Global standard of care. Companies’ supply chains have expanded into regions whose EHS regulations and expectations differ from those of the Western world. The challenges of managing EHS in emerging markets include threats that reach across borders (such as trade, climate change, and pandemics) and the lack of a universal EHS standard of care.
  • Sensor technology. New applications of sensor technologies are producing greater amounts of diverse, personalized data. Real-time instruments can better capture current exposures and allow for a real-time response. They also hold promise for long-term and continuous monitoring, and can be used to promote risk communication.
  • Total worker exposure. To fully protect workers, IHs need to understand how non-occupational exposures—for example, from hobbies and consumer products—integrate with occupational exposures.

CPAG encourages all volunteer groups to familiarize themselves with the dashboards and review the planned initiatives. Chances are that volunteer groups will discover ways that they​ can participate in the listed initiatives or generate additional ideas for potential initiatives related to the topic areas. Volunteer groups should talk with their Board coordinator to discuss their ideas and whether they should be included in the dashboards. They can also work with the Board coordinator to decide how to bring ideas forward as proposals. Our CPAG website has information on how to submit a “Stage 1 Proposal” (AIHA member login required).

Note that while AIHA encourages volunteer groups to consider the content priorities when creating content, we don’t expect every volunteer group project to align with the priorities.

For more information about CPAG and content development at AIHA, visit the CPAG website. And please don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions.

Elizabeth Pullen

Elizabeth Pullen is a past president of AIHA and chair of the Content Portfolio Advisory Group.


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