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1734 Utilising digital media: where are we now, where are we going and why should we care? the good, the bad and the really ugly
  1. MR Lum
  1. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Washington, DC, USA


This presentation will address the following key factors: How do we best use the new digital technology to deliver our OSH information for engagement and impact?; What techniques and strategies actually work and how do we know?; What might the future look like and how are we adapting? Digital Media is at the very heart of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, changing our approach to communication and increasing the delivery of information with exceptional speed to our audiences. Digital technology is evolving faster than organisations can adapt. It is a fate that challenges most organisations in almost every industry. Digital technology has exploded and is being continually modified especially since the new millennium. We find ourselves skyrocketing into an entirely new world of communication and information sharing. We now reach out and connect to our friends, family and co-workers virtually instantaneously with the touch of a few buttons. This new constant connexion has fundamentally changed the way we interact with each other and our target audiences. Because of continual digital modifications we must be agile and alert to utilising better strategies and techniques to deliver information to improve decision making by our citizens in their working environment not only for today but also for the unforeseeable future.

This presentation using globally derived data will discuss the use of a variety of the most popular digital communication platforms from Facebook and Twitter to Wikipedia, their international effect on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and their potential impact for extending the global reach of our OSH health information and expanding the engagement with both health professionals and the general public. This presentation has been organised to highlight the good, and the not so good challenges we face in the advanced digitization environment.

The good:

  • The promise of Increased reach of our information with minimal cost and effort;

  • The opportunity for closer global collaboration of information generation;

  • Easy to use digital impact and engagement measures; and

  • A proven mechanism to reach the ever increasing independent work force.

The not so good:

  • A lack of imagination and strategy, coupled with unpredictability and poor data quality:

  • A lack of agility and insufficient encouragement towards innovation: and

  • A lack of pertinent competencies and insufficient strategies to overcome consolidation by information generators whose algorithms tend to favour sensationalism over science, fabricated news over facts and are increasingly monetized ads over meaningful content.

These challenges will be addressed by a selection of case studies which highlight mechanisms and strategies to overcome transformational barriers in the digital environment.

  • Health communication
  • digital transformation
  • digital Darwinism
  • science communication
  • information dissemination

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