SustainSME - extended skills management for ensuring and managing the design of preventive working practices in small and medium-sized companies

The construction industry is a key sector of the German economy. However, the high number of industrial injuries and work-related illness in the sector is cause for concern. Older employees in particular often have to quit their job early for health reasons. In comparison with other industries, the absence rate due to sickness is considerably higher due to the physically demanding nature of the work (prolonged standing, carrying heavy loads, noise etc.).  

Within the scope of the SustainSME project, an innovative concept is now being developed that raises awareness of healthy working practices of construction industry managers and employees by using a range of qualifications with the aid of preventive occupational health and safety elements. The other project partners besides Fraunhofer IMW are the building trade training organization Bildungszentren des Baugewerbes e.V. (BZB), Zentralstelle für die Weiterbildung im Handwerk e.V. (ZWH), an organization that focuses on the further qualification of tradespeople, the underground civil engineering company Gebr. Kickartz GmbH from Krefeld and Duisburg-based construction company Gebr. Hölscher GmbH.

Within the scope of the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) funding priority "Preventive Measures for Safe and Healthy Work Practices of Tomorrow", the collaboration, which includes members of the research and business communities as well as occupational health and safety professionals, aims to develop application-oriented approaches for preventive working practices in 30 collaborative projects throughout Germany. These collaborations seek to develop future-proof occupational health and safety practices with the aid of smart technologies and concepts and models, for example. The MEgA (Measures and Recommendations for Healthy Work Practices of Tomorrow) project accompanies this funding priority scientifically. The projects are financed with funds provided by the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) and coordinated by the Project Management Agency Karlsruhe (PTKA).

The guidelines developed within the scope of the SustainSME project will soon be available on this Website.

The project partners collaborating in SustainSME are:

Fraunhofer Center for International Management and Knowledge Economy IMW

Zentralstelle für die Weiterbildung im Handwerk e.V.

Bildungszentren des Baugewerbes e.V.

Gebr. Hölscher Bauunternehmung GmbH

Gebr. Kickartz GmbH

If you have any scientific questions regarding the project contents, please contact:

Thomas Hofmann

Contact Press / Media

Thomas Hofmann

Research Fellow, Unit Professional Development and Competence Management

Fraunhofer Center for International Management and Knowledge Economy IMW
Neumarkt 9-19
04109 Leipzig, Germany

Phone +49 341 231039-273

Fax +49 341 231039-9273

Anzhela Preissler

Contact Press / Media

Anzhela Preissler

Head of Unit, Professional Development and Competence Management

Fraunhofer Center for International Management and Knowledge Economy IMW
Neumarkt 9-19
04109 Leipzig, Germany

Phone +49 341 231039-133

Fax +49 341 231039-9133