The lighting at work premises often impacts upon the safety and health of workers at work. In principle, the European legal framework makes no provision for standards in this area. Nevertheless, standards governing lighting at work premises have been and continue to be developed. KAN's view is that the German national foreword of such standards must state that national provisions governing lighting at work premises exist that extend beyond the scope of the standard. References at this point to the German Ordinance on Workplaces and to relevant state rules and regulations and those of the German Social Accident Insurance Institutions assist the user of the standard in observing the binding regulations.

Non-visual effects of light

Besides enabling human beings to see, light also has non-visual effects upon the human body. Non-visual effects of light influence human physiology, mood and behaviour. Light can for example briefly raise attentiveness, and may also influence the human biological clock and thus also the circadian (i.e. daily) rhythm.

Besides being exerted by daylight, these non-visual effects can also be produced by special artificial lighting. Daylight, however, dictates the natural rhythm for each individual's inner clock. Artificial lighting may have similarities to daylight but is not a substitute for it in every respect.

In 2015, KAN published a position paper on the subject of non-visual effects in standardization. Since further observations have been made and agreements reached in discussions between the stakeholders since the position paper was published, it was last updated in 2022.

The following documents addressing the non-visual effects of light have been published for the planning of lighting installations:

Further information 

Do you have any questions on this topic, or need support? If so, please contact Dr Anna Dammann.