"Marketing" is probably not a word that's used much in university chemistry labs; likewise, lab reagent and equipment suppliers may not consider it a key part of their job to actively promote lab safety practices. But what if marketing lab equipment safety, with all of the flash and attention-holding gimmicks in the sales and advertising arsenal is exactly what is needed to keep (often young) lab workers safe? And who knows more about marketing: business or academia?
A recent article in Inside Science on the challenge of insuring a safe laboratory experience for students and researchers addressed the specific issue of the lack of data showing the best lab safety practices. To meet this gap in knowledge about not only how to be safe but to teach and monitor safety in the lab, UCLA launched the UC Center for Laboratory Safety, which is the first of its kind in the nation to study lab safety and develop optimal lab practices. Essentially, what they do is: