The BCEOHRN Spotlight: Judy Village

Newsletter Feature – The BCEOHRN Spotlight!

The BCEOHRN Spotlight is a new feature that will be appearing regularly in BCEOHRN newsletters going forward. Based on suggestions from the membership, we will be interviewing BCEOHRN researchers and students and sharing their responses. We hope you enjoy getting to know other BCEOHRN members!

Our first researcher in the spotlight is Dr. Judy Village. She was recently awarded the Liberty Mutual Prize in Ergonomics for this paper: 

Please describe your general research interests for the BCEOHRN membership:
My research goal is the prevention and control of musculoskeletal disorders in the workplace through the application of human factors and ergonomic (HFE) principles to the design of work, including work layout, equipment, design of job tasks, and the organization of work. Improving the understanding of what aspects of work contribute to injury can then lead to solutions for the prevention of further injuries. My research has involved a wide range of jobs and workplaces, including health care, custodial workers, construction workers, manufacturing, the forestry and wood products sector and mining. 

What was the impetus behind this study?
The study, which formed part of my PhD dissertation, was a 3-year longitudinal action research collaboration with BlackBerry Ltd. The goal of the study, working with engineers and ergonomists at the new product realization site, was to find ways to integrate human factors aspects into the design of their assembly production lines as new products were being ramped for production. The impetus behind the study was to learn how HFE principles could be applied proactively in assembly design for the primary prevention of worker injuries and inefficiencies. 

How was the study funded?
The study was funded in part by BlackBerry Ltd, and through the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board in Ontario. Four students were involved, with additional funding through NSERC and MITACS. I was funded with an Alexander Graham Bell Scholarship through NSERC. 

What was the key result?
The main outcome of the study was a grounded theory that explained how human factors/ergonomics went from being a reactive, after-injury type of assessment performed within occupational health and safety, to becoming proactive HF targets enforced by Senior Directors of Engineering in each stage of the assembly design process. The theory proposed that when Ergonomists acclimated to the engineering design process, language and tools, and aligned their goals with that of the production engineers, they became a means to help improve business performance. At this point, Ergonomists are on the engineering team and Senior managers then wanted to hold their design engineers accountable for HFE. When engineering design tools were adapted to include HFE targets, and Senior managers recognized these targets would help achieve business goals, they held their engineers responsible for the HFE targets, thus locking HFE into the design process.

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How did you communicate the findings?
The study has resulted in 8 publications in scientific journals (one of which was nominated by publisher Taylor & Francis as one of the top 10 most popular articles of 2014), and 12 conference proceedings. The study was showcased as an invited keynote at the Association of Canadian Ergonomists (ACE) Annual Conference in Montreal in 2014, and was written in lay language for the popular American magazine “Industrial Engineer”. Recently, ACE hosted a full-day workshop based on the research to share with others common engineering design tools and ways to integrate HFE into early design of production systems.

What impact do you hope it will have?
What we learned applies to all occupational health fields who want engineers to design workplaces in ways that prevent health problems. When the Ergonomists shifted their goals from solely an injury focus, to one of helping engineers achieve their goals of designing efficient and effective production systems, there was far more interest in HFE. As Ergonomists, we need to learn more about strategic goals in the organization and how to align HFE with these goals. We also need to learn the design process, engineering tools and business improvement programs such as “lean manufacturing” such that we can integrate our principles into their processes to be most effective.

Who were your collaborators in BC and elsewhere?
The collaboration involved engineers and ergonomists from the Human Factors Engineering Laboratory of the Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department at Ryerson University in Toronto, and engineers and ergonomists at BlackBerry Ltd.

What is your #1 networking tip for others working in this field?
Go to conferences, talk about your work, learn about other people’s work and share commonalities.

What’s next for you?
I continue to teach the Ergonomics course in the SPPH and am looking for further opportunities for research and collaboration that improves the design of work and promotes healthy workers.

Future of Occupational Health Symposium

Future of Occupational Health Symposium
June 24 – 25, 2015
Seattle, Washington, USA
The Future of Occupational Health Symposium aims to bring together Thought Leaders to reflect on the future of the field in regard to practice, policy, research, and the education of practitioners, businesses, and workers. In this highly interactive symposium, participants will be called upon to develop an actionable agenda to address the changing needs of the field of occupational health.

Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors 2015 Annual Educational Conference

Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors 2015 Annual Educational Conference
Looking Back, Moving Forward
September 13 – 16, 2015
Ottawa, Ontario
The Canadian Institute of Public Health Inspectors (CIPHI) Ontario Branch welcomes you to the 81st Annual Educational Conference, to be held at the Westin Hotel in beautiful downtown Ottawa. The conference will incorporate educational, business and networking opportunities in the National Capital Region. Our carefully chosen speakers will engage the audience with historical overviews, the lessons learned, and visions and strategies to meet the environmental and public health challenges of the future. We look forward to seeing you!

Industrial Hygienist Carmon Creek

Industrial Hygienist – Oil & Gas Mega-Project Construction Support
Safety Management Systems, LLC (SMS) deploys HSE technicians and consultants, fire prevention specialists, certified paramedics specially trained in remote care medicine, and offers an extensive array of regulatory and compliance training and wellness services to the upstream and midstream oil & gas industry.
We are currently seeking an experienced Industrial Hygienist to work in support of an Oil & Gas Mega-Project in the role of construction support.

This is a fly in/out position located near the town of Peace River, Alberta.


• Provide site with competent industrial hygiene advice and services.
• Contribute to the implementation and embedding of corporate HSSE Control Framework,
• Provide industrial hygiene interpretation to Construction HSSE Leads and leadership teams on OHS regulatory or project requirements.
• Meet regulatory and site specific HSSE objectives/strategies and anticipate/forward planning of supporting work for OHS and Construction HSSE Program compliance process.
• Interface with senior management, corporate or work site based HSSE teams and other stakeholders.
• Assist in the implementation of the site Industrial Hygiene Plan and supporting training programs.
• Support the Construction HSSE Manager through various industrial hygiene improvement projects and initiatives.
• Provide leadership in achieving Goal Zero by working through and with others, both within corporate and contractor organizations.
Specific Accountabilities:

• Develop, support and implement industrial hygiene monitoring and sampling strategy and ensure archiving of results.
• Update Health Risk Assessment, based on Management of Change, HSSE & SP Construction and Logistics Case and HAZID/HAZOP reviews
• Provide Health Risk Assessment services and close health actions resulting audit findings.
• Raise general awareness of staff / contractors in occupational health.
• Implement Health Hazard Communication Process and assist with chemical management, inclusive to providing guidance and approval for controlled products.
• Maintenance of WHMIS processes and procedures.
• Complete Construction related Industrial Hygiene audits and reviews, both in the field and camp facilities.
• Identify, promote synergies and share best practices with both project contractors and corporate Health Management Department.
• Assist in the implementation of the corporate Health Management Program, as required and agreed to by the Project HSSE Manager, with the Country Health Manager and Health & Canada Industrial Hygiene Lead.
• Deliver appropriate industrial hygiene training, as required for construction.
• Monitor and report compliance of and assurance against Group HSSE objectives and targets as well as corporate Performance Monitoring and Reporting (PMR) requirements.
• Oversee and provide input in contractor and subcontractor’s Occupational Health Management Programs, including application of the project’s health processes.
• Ensure that the Industrial Hygiene related records and documentation is maintained and processes are developed for ensuring that contractors comply with project agreed record retention requirements.
• Focal point for scheduling external and internal project Industrial Hygiene audits.
• Provide industrial hygiene expertise during construction execution and transitioning to commissioning and start up activities to ensure health related risks are identified, assessed and managed effectively.
• Become project’s Subject Matter Expert (SME) for current OHS Regulations, as it relates to Industrial Hygiene, and interpretation of corporate Industrial Hygiene requirements.

Experience and Qualifications:
• Industrial Hygiene training at University level. Bachelor Degree in Science with core emphasis in Occupational Health or HSE. Master Degree in the Comprehensive Industrial Hygiene preferred.
• Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) or Registered Occupational Hygienist (ROH).
• Training –experience in construction/onshore drilling processes/well completion activities particularly in the assessment of “Health Hazards”: Silica, Diesel Exhaust, Noise and NORM (Radiation).
• Industrial Hygiene experience working on mega construction projects, particularly within the oil and gas industry.
• Leadership skills, including the ability to influence without authority.
• Excellent communication and Interpersonal skills – requirement for presentation and report writing skills.
• Self-motivated team player with ability and desire to take responsibility and drive workloads to effective resolution.
• Ability to work in a team environment but equally work well independently and on own initiative.

To apply, contact

Environmental Specialist Carmon Creek

Environmental Specialist – Oil & Gas Mega-Project
Safety Management Systems, LLC (SMS) deploys HSE technicians and consultants, fire prevention specialists, certified paramedics specially trained in remote care medicine, and offers an extensive array of regulatory and compliance training and wellness services to the upstream and midstream oil & gas industry.
We are currently seeking a Senior Environmental Specialist to work in support of an Oil & Gas Mega-Project.

This is a fly in/out position located near the town of Peace River, Alberta with periodic stays in Calgary.


• Provide environmental expertise from planning through to execution to commissioning phases for drilling of wells, installation of pipeline and construction of facilities.
• Provide specialist advice to teams on the effective management of environmental risks, ensuring they are understood and mitigations or controls are put in place in a timely fashion.
• Provide managerial duties for Contractor Environmental staff.
• Commitment Tracking and Stakeholder Engagement (CTSE) database Gatekeeper for Construction, and responsible for closeout of project commitments.
• Is the site environmental interface focal point
Specific Accountabilities:
• Provide environmental expertise to P&T Onshore Projects (current area of responsibility will be Carmon Creek) from design through to execution activities to ensure environmental risks are identified, assessed and managed effectively.
• Manage overall environmental and local community permit preparation, revisions, submission, approval, variation and reporting process in line with regulatory requirements. Become the CTSE Gatekeeper.
• Represent the Carmon Creek team on all aspects of environmental affairs including environmental management programs, field implementation of environmental protection programs, field inspections, environmental reporting etc. Provide direction, leadership and coordination for development and implementation of environmental management plans.
• Focal environmental project point for regulatory liaison with AENV, their advisors, other stakeholders and HSSE for P&T, and key role in maintaining positive reputation management interfaces during execution.
• Provide input to annual HSSE Plan improvement areas and Management Review process.
• Responsible for development and review of Environmental Management System documentation for Carmon Creek in line with local and Shell requirements.
• Key role in simplification of environmental guidance to Carmon Creek supervisors, providing awareness training on legal and internal environmental requirements to Project staff.
• Monitor compliance with Legal and internal environmental requirements through participation in regular audits and site visits. Participate in project management regular
• formal HSSE inspections, meetings and audits and assist with follow up / closure of open items. Develop standard audits and requirements specifically related to environmental performance and in line with project guidelines.
• Investigation of environmental non-compliances, analysing trends to determine areas for improvement and sharing of best practices within the Shell community.
• Provide environmental input to Emergency Response requirements for P&T activities.
• Establish effective working relationship with Contractor, Asset and Project Environmental Specialists to align on key environmental improvement areas in P&T.
• Oversee and optimize design of environmental projects
• Establish initial environmental requirements for the construction team on behalf of Project management team as construction forces are mobilized.
• Work with the Project Team to ensure that:
o contractors have an approved environmental protection plan in place, that aligns with the project specific requirements, prior to the commencement of work.
o protective measures are installed as required to protect against soil erosion, groundwater and surface water contamination.
o environmental aspects relating to air, water and land are managed appropriately.
• Initiate and implement Environmental awareness campaigns and any related incentive schemes.

Experience and Qualifications:
• Professional qualifications in environmental or chemical science (at least BSc or equivalent).
• Prior environmental supervisory and field experience (7-10 years) on an industrial site.
• A thorough understanding of the ISO 14001 requirements and proven related implementation experience.
• Good interpersonal skills and aptitude for coaching others.
• Leadership skills, including the ability to influence without authority.
• Prior experience and involvement in interfacing with regulatory bodies will be considered an asset.

To apply, contact

American Industrial Hygiene Conference & Exposition (AIHce)

Registration is now open for the American Industrial Hygiene Conference & Exposition (AIHce). This is a must-attend event for industrial hygiene and occupational and environmental health and safety professionals. Join nearly 5,000 colleagues at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, May 30 – June 4, 2015, for world-class education and networking opportunities. Learn more at: