The role of media in prevention

The art of storytelling as a means of learning is nothing new

The role of media in prevention

The art of storytelling as a means of learning is nothing new. Since the dawn of civilization, humans have been telling stories to explain everything from creation origins to seasonal changes to the cosmos. Now, in our digital age, storytelling in media is being used to educate and inform – particularly when it comes to a culture of prevention.

Culture of prevention

HRD recently spoke to Martina Hesse-Spötter, Chair of the ISSA Special Commission on Prevention and speaker at the World Congress on Safety and Health at Work. Hesse-Spötter revealed how media can be used as a vehicle to prevent accidents at work. She strongly believes in the Vision Zero approach, which states that every work-related accident and every occupational disease is preventable.

“Media, in particular video content, has a very important role to play in the culture of prevention,” she told HRD. “At the recent International Media Festival for Prevention IMFP, we saw some incredible productions that really hammered home the need for enhanced care in the workplace. Also, in past Festivals we’ve seen amazing productions, for example one of the winners of the Festival in Singapore in 2017: the short video Shoelaces.”

Inspired by a true event, the commercial highlighted that accidents at your job can follow you home to your loved ones – hurting them too. The advert was part of an integrated marketing campaign in 2016, one which aimed to spread a message of safety.


Medium is the message

In the current Festival there are great films and multimedia products which convey very strong messages. The six winners, which are going to be announced in the IMFP Special Media Session, are impressive productions that share amazing storylines.

The use of media in the field of occupational safety helps really cement ideas in employees’ minds. We live in a virtual world, where visual media is a medium for almost all of our interactions. As Canadian communication scientist Marshall McLuhan once said, “the medium is the message”. Through innovative technology coupled with visual learning, employers have a real chance at preventing workplace accidents.

To hear more on how you can build a strong prevention culture with savvy media, join Martina Hesse-Spötter at the IMFP Special Media Session at the World Congress on Safety and Health at Work. All 289 media products submitted to the current Media Festival are also available at


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