Regarding regulations being unable to elicit culture change, it reminds me of an issue that goes still further back. I remember when the Civil Rights laws were passed some people complained that you can’t force (white) people to like or be nice to (black) people. This has to come from the heart, and laws can’t help, and may make things worse.
It’s true that we needed to change hearts and minds on the race issue in America, but I think it is wrong in hindsight to argue that laws can’t help this to happen, and are necessary in any event out of simple justice. I suggest the situation with OSH rules may be similar. So long as the rule is just and fair, the cultural part of it will likely follow. In fact, laws and rules are themselves already a sign of cultural change – like laws limiting smoking and requiring seat belts.
Also, for another example, think bicycle helmets. Think seat belts. Think eye protection worn by do-it-yourselfers. There has been a generational shift. Also, as society becomes better educated, just as quality improves in the products and services consumed, people are more likely to look out for their personal safety... which is easier to do, as well, because the tools necessary are more readily available beyond the workplace.
I don't think a culture can be created, I believe its more of an evolution based on actions by thought-leaders.Emails from a safety products manufacturing exec and a political science writer responding to an ISHN article on culture change