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SOBANE English

Unité Hygiène et Physiologie du Travail de l'UCL














Researches and publications of Prof. J. Malchaire

SOBANE Strategy

SOBANE strategy

The Déparis guides



Musculoskeletal disorders back and upper limbs

Work physiology

Work on VDU


Sick Building Syndrome

Psychosocial aspects

Industrial hygiene


Thermal environments

Hand-arm vibration

Whole-body vibration

Chemical agents


This site contains publications, documents and computer programs... in the fields on which I have had the privilege to conduct research:

— Ambient physical agents: working with heat, sound environments, exposure to vibrations of the whole body or upper extremities.

— Musculoskeletal disorders, work physiology, work with VDU units, sick building syndrome, psychosocial aspects...

Everything is free and open access.  Click on a link in the table above to see the available documents.  Some are available in different languages.

I hope you find some of this useful.  I am sure that when using any document or part of a document on this site, you will want to cite the source. Thank you

Jacques Malchaire           jacques.malchaire@uclouvain.be


The SOBANE strategy seeks to coordinate the interventions of the various partners involved in well-being at work and to bring in increasingly specialized tools, methods and skills as and when required, with a view to faster, more effective and more economical prevention. It is made up of four levels: Screening, Observation, Analysis and Expertise.

-  Screening, where risk factors are detected and obvious solutions implemented.

-  Observation, where the remaining problems are investigated in depth, the reasons and solutions are discussed in detail.

-  Analysis, where, when necessary, a prevention consultant is called in to carry out the necessary measurements and develop special solutions.

-  Expertise, in those rare cases where an expert is indispensable to study and solve a specific problem.


The SOBANE strategy is based on the following principles:

1.     Primacy goes to prevention and adaptation of work to man.

2.     The skills available are complementary, from the worker to the prevention adviser and the expert.

3.     The worker must be the main actor in prevention.

4.     All the problems are interrelated and the approach to work situations must be global.

5.     Prevention aims at an optimal state of well-being and productivity, not just compliance with the law.

6.     Prevention can start as soon as risks are recognized: quantitative assessment can be done later.

7.     Methods should be developed for SMEs where more than 60% of employees work.


The SOBANE guides

The concertation guide Déparis (Participatory Risk Screening) is the tool for level 1, Screening.

Observation, Analysis and Expertise guides have been developed for 15 risk areas:

1.     Noise

2.     Thermal working environments

3.     Hazardous chemicals

4.     Biological agents

5.     Whole body vibrations

6.     Hand - arm vibrations

7.     Working with screen

8.     Musculoskeletal disorders (MSD)

9.     Lighting

10.    Psychosocial aspects

11.    Social premises

12.    Machines and hand tools

13.    Safety (accidents, falls, slips, etc.)

14.    Electrical risks

15.    Fire or explosion risks