Spring 2015 Events

Note: additional events will be added as the Spring Colloquium Series is finalized.

Monday, January 26, 2015 | 12pm - 1pm

Peter Philips

The Impact of Illness Prevention Policies on Statewide Injury Rates in U.S. Construction

Peter Philips, Professor, Economics, University of Utah; IRLE Visiting Scholar

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) asserts that Injury and Illness Prevention Programs (IIPPs) dramatically reduce workplace injuries. OSHA predicts that individual employers adopting IIPPs will experience as much as a 35 percent drop in injuries, and statewide adoption of mandatory IIPPs would result in a 12 percent decline. While critics concede that voluntary IIPPs can substantially reduce firm-level injury rates, weak and limited literature on state-level IIPP policies fails to show that mandatory IIPPs reduce injuries. A fixed effects panel data model of injury rates in U.S. construction from 1982 to 2008 shows that controlling for confounding factors including changes in reporting culture, long term trends in injury reduction, business cycle and other economic factors, mandatory IIPPs reduce total construction injury rates by 32 percent and lost workday injuries by 38 percent in areas of low union density. As construction union density rises, the impact of IIPPs declines. The relatively weak impact of both mandatory and quasi-voluntary IIPPs in more heavily unionized construction is explained by the greater prevalence of joint union-management training programs which provide practices and procedures similar to those promoted by IIPPs.


All events are located at the Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, 2521 Channing Way, Berkeley.

TO ATTEND AN EVENT, PLEASE R.S.V.P. Myra Armstrong, zulu2@berkeley.edu