Health and Safety


Fieldwork is defined as any practical work carried out by staff or students of the University for the purpose of teaching or research in places which are not under the direct supervisory control of the University, but where the University is responsible for the safety of its staff, students, or others who may be affected by their activities.

The University has guidance for Safety in Fieldwork PDF format, including specific information on requirements for high risk expeditions.

Key Points

School policy in relation to fieldwork activities must include procedures to ensure adequate risk assessment, the establishment of safe working procedures, clear lines of responsibility in the field, competence, training, and fitness of individuals to do the work, contingency plans for foreseeable problems and procedures for the review of the safety of fieldwork activities.

Group working is preferred. Lone-working in the field presents particularly high risks and should be avoided whenever possible. Particularly stringent codes of practice are required for unsupervised work.

Where fieldwork is carried out on the premises of another organisation, Schools should be satisfied that the local safety procedures are adequate for the work envisaged and that the individuals concerned understand and comply with them.

Schools should also ensure that accommodation for field trips outside the United Kingdom meets an acceptable standard of safety. Where possible such accommodation should be booked through a travel agency or tour operator affiliated to the Association of British Travel Agents.

High Risk Locations

Expeditions to hostile, remote and/or inaccessible locations present a higher degree of risk than standard field expeditions. As such they will require rigorous risk assessment and identification of control measures to reduce risks to a level that is acceptable to both the University and the individual participants.

The University Safety Committee has established an Expedition Peer Review Panel (EPRP) comprised of University employees who have experience of organising these types of expedition and who will review and approve risk assessments and emergency response plan and advise the relevant Head of School as to its adequacy or otherwise.

The University has also engaged the services of International SOS to provide advice on high risk expeditions and security, medical assistance and evacuation of casualties in event of emergency.

Related Links


Safety Office

Pharmacy Building - Lower Ground Floor
University Park
University of Nottingham
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

Telephone: +44 (0)115 951 3401