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Research priorities

The annual research priorities are informed by WorkSafeBC’s five-year strategic plan to ensure alignment with the strategic goals of the organization. Each year, Research Services consults with internal and external stakeholders to identify key research priorities to serve both current and emerging issues.

Research priorities

Research Services invites proposals aligned with the topics listed below. The key priority areas for 2021 are shown in bold font. We will consider the merits of all proposals while giving preference to proposals that address the key priority areas.


Strategic Alignment Research Priorities
Prevent workplace injury, disease and death
  • Preventing psychological injuries, bullying and harassment
  • Reducing occupational exposures
  • Reducing incidence of serious injury, occupational disease and death
  • Encouraging a culture of safety, and promoting safety leadership in workplaces, with a focus on ensuring worker engagement and participation
  • Innovative approaches for the prevention of injury, disease and death
Improve return to work (RTW)
  • Effective tools, interventions and disability management models (focus on mental health disorders)
  • Evidence based medical and rehabilitative interventions (focus on chronic pain, opioid management, mental health disorders, head and brain injuries)
  • Evidence based occupational disease etiology, treatment and management (focus on mesothelioma and asbestos-related cancer)
  • Improving service experience and return to work outcomes for small business employers
  • Innovations in rehabilitation and service delivery
Adapt to social, economic and technological change
  • Adapting to the changing nature of the work (focus on gig economy workers, precarious employment, impact of new technology, impact of remote working and the future of work)
  • Impact of gender and sex differences in occupational health and safety and disability outcomes
  • Addressing the needs of vulnerable workers (focus indigenous, and immigrant workers)

While the merits of all proposals will be considered, preference will be given to proposals that incorporate the following:

  • Sex and gender considerations into research questions and study design. For integrating sex and gender considerations, refer to the information on the CIHR website.
  • Address the needs and challenges of vulnerable populations including Indigenous workers; aging workers; young workers; transient or migrant workers, immigrant or new workers; small businesses.