Industrial Safety and Risk Management


This course is oriented towards the learning of risk assessment and management within Industrial contexts and/or all kinds of work activities. It should assist in the design of prevention within a socio-economic perspective. It covers both the areas of occupational safety (associated with the worker) and operational safety (associated with each activity sector).

At the end of the semester, students should have gained essential competencies and skills to:

- Apply International Standards for Risk Management 

- Carry out a methodic and structured Risk Assessment (for Occupational risk and Industrial/Operational risk)

- Identify and specify risk control measures (barriers)

- Perform a Cost-Benefit Analysis (CBS) applied to risk management

- Address Risk Communication in an organisation, and discuss safety matters with the local specialists of the organisation. 

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Isabel Maria Nascimento Lopes Nunes, Maria Celeste Rodrigues Jacinto


Weekly - 2

Total - 30

Teaching language



None are compulsory. However, it is highly recommended that students have finished the curricular unit of OSH (Occupational Safety and Health), since there is continuity of contents.


- International Standards: ISO 45001(2018), ISO 31000(2018); ISO/IEC 31010(2019); BS 8800(2004), OHSAS 18001(2007), BS 5760-2(1994)

- Harms-Ringdahl, L. 2013. Guide to safety analysis for accident prevention. IRS Riskhantering AB, Stockholm, Sweden

- Kirwan, B. 1994. A Guide to Practical Human Reliability Assessment. Taylor & Francis. Lon

- Kumamoto, H. & Henley, E.J.1996. Probabilistic Risk Assessment and Management for Engineers and Scientists, 2nd Ed, IEEE Press, NY.

- Harms-Ringdahl, L. 2001. Safety Analysis – Principles and Practice in Occupational Safety, 2nd Edition.Taylor & Francis,Lon.

- Kjellén, U. 2000. Prevention of accidents through experience feedback, Taylor & Francis.

- Hollnagel, E. 2004. Barriers and Accident Prevention, Ashgate Publishing Ltd, Aldershot,UK

- Rausand, Marvin 2011. Risk Assessment: theory, methods and applications. Wiley. ISBN: 978-0-470-63764-7.

- Aven, T. 2003. Foundations of Risk Analysis. Wiley.

Teaching method

Teaching Methods

Lectures of 2h, combining theory and practice. After an explanation of main concepts and theories, students are expected to apply them in practice using a case-study approach, preferably based on real cases. Group discussions will be held for the appraisal of safety measures and risk control strategies. There is a Group Work carried out in an enterprise (i.e., a real case for practicing and learning). 

Evaluation method

Evaluation is based on the following elements:

1 Individual single TEST (60% weight on final classification; grade >=10 pt)

2 GROUP ASSIGNMENTS (40% weight on final classification; each work >=10 pt), as follows:

- 1st Group Work (2-3 students/group) (10%): EU Legislation. One specific topic per group; oral presentation and discussion

- 2nd  Group Work (2-3 students/group) (30%)the work consists of a comprehensive risk assessment applied to a real working or industrial context. The output is delivered in the format of a "short report". Examples of previous reports will be available for reference.

OBS: the work is made by the Group, but the classification can be individualized, depending on the level of participation and commitment of each student.

Subject matter

1. Industrial Safety vs Occupational Safety, or “operational” vs “occupational” risks. ISO 31000 and ISO/FDIS 31010, standard definitions.

2. Safety Audits. Safety performance indicators.

3. Prevention of Major Accidents. The framework of SEVESO Directives and ATEX Directives. Transportation of hazardous substances. 

4. Reliability and Failure. Probabilities. Elements of Boolean Algebra. Reliability Diagrams versus Fault Tree techniques. Elements of Human Reliability Assessment (HRA).

5. Risk Assessment.

5A)- Qualitative approaches (Deviation analysis, Energy analysis, JSA, FMEA / FMECA, HAZOP, SFA); Evaluation of Risk Level. Risk Matrix. Hierarchy of risk control measures.

5B)- Quantitative /probabilistic methods (FTA, Event Trees, Bow-Tie).

6. Risk Control and Management. General measures (barriers) for risk control. Prevention and protection barriers. The ALARP principle in risk management. Cost-benefit.


Programs where the course is taught: