About us

IfADo investigates, on the one hand, basics of physiological and psychological processes of the liver, the brain, the immune system as well as the musculoskeletal and sensory system. On the other hand, we examine connections with the working environment, such as: How can we create ergonomic and healthy working places? Which threshold values of potentially hazardous substances at workplaces are acceptable? How does aging influence cognitive functions and how can workplaces be optimized for the needs of older employees?

Challenges of modern work

Working environments are constantly changing whereas human physiology remains relatively static. This creates a friction between work and individuals which requires new and adequate responses and solutions. Since its foundation, IfADo has determined its foci of research through the identification of these areas of conflict between humans and their work environments. The purpose of the institute is to prevent work-related diseases and improve human performance and well-being.

Research and practice

IfADo investigates the demands of modern work with a wide and interdisciplinary range of sciences including ergonomics, immunology, toxicology, psychology and neurosciences. This professional diversity enables us to look for solutions and explanations concerning the following:

  • burnout
  • age-related decrease in efficiency
  • toxicologic risks
  • changes in immunity caused by aging, toxins, stress, etc.
  • neurological basics
  • musculo-skeletal disorders
  • human-machine interfaces

Interdisciplinary and Applied

Implementation: Many of our research findings are used for practical applications. For instance, IfADo develops ergonomic design principles, cognitive trainings, and recommendations for occupational medicine. In the field of life sciences, IfADo uses innovative technologies, which are often tailored, optimized and, where appropriate, patented. IfADo transfers knowledge via several channels, including online-tests, trainings, lectures, handouts, and consulting tools.

Policy advice: IfADo participates in different committees both at the national and international level that are involved in regulation and standardization of toxilogical, ergonomic or occupational questions. This includes the determination of limit values for hazardous substances and working materials as well as ergonomic guidelines. Furthermore, IfADo is a Collaborating Centre for Occupational Health of the WHO.