Social impacts of occupational heat stress and adaptation strategies of workers: A narrative synthesis of the literature
School of Arts and Humanities
Dimensions of risks and impacts of occupational heat stress due to climate change on workers' health and safety, productivity, and social well-being are significantly deleterious. Aside from empirical evidence, no systematic review exists for policy development and decision making in managing occupation heat stress impacts and adaptation strategies of workers. This study sought to synthesise evidence on the social impacts of occupational heat stress and adaptation strategies of workers. From a review of existing literature, eight categories were obtained from 25 studies and grouped into three syntheses: (1) awareness of occupational heat stress, (2) social impacts of occupational heat stress and (3) workers' adaptation to occupational heat stress due to changing climate. Awareness of occupational heat stress among workers varied and their social impacts were related to workers' health and safety, productivity and social well-being. Sustainable adaptation to occupation heat stress due to climate change hinges on financial resource availability. Adequate investment and research are required to develop and implement policies to combat the threat of rising temperature and climate change to enhance workers' adaptive capacity, boost resilience and foster sustainable development.