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20 years of continuing education for safety assessors

How do safety assessors ensure that cosmetic products are safe in terms of health? How are the methods for the scientific assessment of contact allergies to be classified? And – which alternative methods to animal experiments are available for the safety assessment of cosmetic products? These are only a few of the highly complex issues which were presented by renowned experts from Germany and abroad at the scientific symposium “20 years of education for safety assessors”, to which IKW and DGK invited. More than 130 safety assessors accepted the offer to have an interdisciplinary, intense exchange on current issues in the field of safety assessment.

In order for consumers within the EU to be able to rely on cosmetic products being safe, the work of the safety assessors is indispensable. They are the experts who are in charge of safeguarding that cosmetics comply with all demands imposed by legislation. A demanding mission which requires knowledge from different disciplines such as chemistry, toxicology, dermatology and cosmetics law. Regular continuing education which keeps the safety assessor always on the most recent state of science and legislation is a must.

This work has been performed for 20 years for DGK and IKW with their offering of continuing education courses which are regularly attended by many safety assessors and are completed with a certificate. Birgit Huber, Head of the Competence Partner Beauty Care within IKW: “We are pleased that the offer of the different course modules has been accepted so well by the safety assessors during the past 20 years, because continuing education in this field is very important. We will continue to work in future on the courses taking place on a very high level and representing a genuine support for the safety assessors.”

IKW and DGK attach a particularly high value to the selection of speakers and ensure that experts from universities, public authorities and industry pass on their expert knowledge to the safety assessors. Concerning the offer of continuing education, it is, moreover, ensured that the contents are practice-oriented and imparted in an intuitively accessible manner. This helps the safety assessors at the implementation in their everyday work. And public authorities appreciate the continuing education events in the same way, since this allows them to judge the work of the safety assessors even better and engage in further education themselves. Another benefit of the events is the direct personal exchange with other colleagues and experts who can help in dealing with issues.

For some time already, the continuing education programme has also been available in English. This means that safety assessors from outside Germany can likewise benefit from the continuing education offering of DGK and IKW.

More information on the DGK/IKW education programme for safety assessors can be found at

A video on the Symposium is available (in German only) at:


*Names of speakers on the foto:

Front row (from left to right):

Dr. Gerd Mildau, Chemisches und Veterinär-Untersuchungsamt, Karlsruhe

Dr. Andreas Butschke, Bundesamt für Verbraucherschutz und Lebensmittelsicherheit (BVL), Braunschweig

Prof. Dr. Johannes Geier, Informationsverbund Dermatologischer Kliniken (IVDK), Universitätsmedizin Göttingen

Prof. Dr. Vera Rogiers, In vitro Toxicology and Dermato-Cosmetology (IVTD), Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Dr. Hartmut Schmidt-Lewerkühne, Präsident DGK e. V., Thannhausen

Dr. Anke Meisner, Bundesministerium für Ernährung und Landwirtschaft (BMEL), Berlin

Britta Klebon, DGK e. V., Thannhausen

Dr. Rob Taalman, Cosmetics Europe, Brussels

Top row (from left to right):

Prof. Dr. Gerhard Eisenbrand, Senior Research Professor (Retired) Food Chemistry & Toxicology

Prof. Dr. Lothar Motischke (retired)

Birgit Huber, stellvertretende Geschäftsführerin des IKW e. V., Frankfurt am Main

Dr. Annegret Blume, Bundesinstitut für Risikobewertung (BfR), Berlin

Prof. Dr. Walter Sterzel, Universität Duisburg-Essen

Dr. Bart A. Heldreth, Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR), Washington, D.C.


© IKW / Bernd Georg



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