Dr Richard Graveling
Associate Senior Ergonomist, Institute of Occupational Medicine (IOM), Edinburgh and Honorary Director at Institute of Ergonomics and Hygiene, Singapore
Dr Richard Graveling has been an ergonomist for 45 years, having worked for the (Institute of Occupational Medicine) IOM throughout. When he first joined the IOM it was part of the NCB and almost all of his work related to coal mining. Once British Coal (and the bulk of the UK coal mining industry) ceased to exist he remained with the now independent IOM and diversified into many other sectors and industries. Throughout these years Musculoskeletal Diseases (MSDs) have been a significant focus and he has engaged in both research and consultancy concerning this major cause of work-related sickness absence and chronic ill-health. Two main topic areas have been back pain and upper limb disorders.
However, MSDs have not been his sole focus and work-related stress has been a constant thread - continuing an interest that started in his pre-IOM years with his PhD research. As with MSDs this work has involved both research and consultancy and he was the primary author of guidance on stress at work prepared for EU-OSHA (the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work) which was translated into all the main EU languages.
These two threads are now coming together, as a growing body of research demonstrates that physical risk factors only provide part of the picture concerning workplace MSDs and that stress at work (psychosocial risk factors) can contribute to their causation.
Although now largely retired Richard remains active with the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors and is currently its Registrar.