Special Issue "WHY, WHEN AND FOR WHOM ARE JOB RESOURCES BENEFICIAL?"
Marc van Veldhoven
Professor of Work, Health and Wellbeing, Department of Human Resource Studies, Tilburg
University, the Netherlands
Anja Van den Broeck
Associate Professor Work and Organizational Studies, Faculty of Business and Economics,
KU Leuven, Belgium
Professor of Organizational Behaviour, Employment Systems and Institutions Group,
University of East Anglia, United Kingdom
Arnold B. Bakker
Professor of Work and Organizational Psychology, Department of Psychology, Erasmus
University Rotterdam, the Netherlands
Susana M. Tavares
Assistant Professor, Department of Human Resources and Organizational Behavior, ISCTEIUL
Business School, Instituto Universitário de Lisboa (ISCTE-IUL), Portugal
Research Fellow, Eastern Academic Research Consortium, University of East Anglia, United
Background and rationale for the special issue
Job resources, such as autonomy and social support, are deemed important ingredients to healthy and interesting work. Policy approaches (e.g. ILO, 2001) as well as theoretical models in job design (Demerouti, Bakker, Nachreiner, & Schaufeli, 2001; Hackman & Oldham, 1976; Karasek, 1979) put job resources to the fore as key levers to enhance employee well-being and performance. Job resources may, however, not always have their intended beneficial effects. For example, job resources may enhance strain when they are unsolicited or become overwhelming (Deelstra et al., 2003; Schwartz, 2000). Yet, with only a few exceptions (e.g., Warr, 1987), theoretical models usually do not account for the negative effects of job resources, or seek to understand the processes or contexts evoking such negative effects. Given recent conceptual (e.g., proactive and relational perspectives on job design; Grant & Parker, 2009) and methodological developments (e.g. diary and experience sampling methods that examine the dynamics of job resources; Bakker & Daniels, 2012), it is timely to seek further understanding of why, when and for whom job resources are either beneficial or harmful. There are four knowledge gaps that further enhance the timeliness of this research topic.
First, we need to overcome our fairly narrow conceptualization of which job resources are relevant. Much research and policy bodies only consider standardized assessments and predefined lists of job resources. However, interventions to improve job resources are expected to be most effective when they take into account resources that are specific to organizational and/or professional contexts (Nielsen, Abildgaard & Daniels, 2014). Second, we need to expand our understanding of the processes through which job resources may have, or fail to have, beneficial effects. The impact of job resources is welldescribed in the job demands - resources model, but current research on why job resources have their effects is mostly grounded in Conservation of Resources Theory (Hobfoll, 1989).This approach is however challenged and criticized for being too broad (Halbesleben, Neveu, Paustian-Underdahl, & Westman, 2014), and some studies have pointed at the relevance of studying more specific processes through which job resources operate (Daniels, Boocock, Glover, Hartley & Holland, 2009). Third, there is evidence that the relationship of job resources with well-being and performance is dependent not just on individual differences or micro-organizational contexts (Tavares, van Knippenberg & van Dick, 2016), but also on meso- and macro-economic factors (van Veldhoven & Peccei, 2015). Factors at the global, national, organizational and individual level may influence the development and availability of job resources (Parker, Van den Broeck, & Holman, 2017). In this special issue, we aim to expand our understanding of job resources; to identify the boundary conditions of resource-based models of job design and elaborate, extend and posit new theoretical processes that explain how job resources come to have their effects; to explore the conditions (e.g., at the individual, meso, or macro-levels) under which job resources have beneficial, neutral, adverse or mixed effects on wellbeing and performance; to use new methodologies capable of capturing job resources’ nuanced effects on wellbeing and performance; and to inform the design of organizational and job level interventions to enhance wellbeing and performance through the provision of appropriate job resources.
Potential topics may include, but are not restricted to the following:
What are the cognitive, emotional, behavioural, social and political processes
involved in the perception, construction and effects of job resources?
Under which conditions do normally positive relationships of job resources with wellbeing
and performance turn into negative or neutral relationships?
What is the role of time? For example, do job resources accumulate over time? Do
resources’ impact on individual’s performance and well-being change over time?
Do daily job resources have psychological properties that are similar or different from
general job resources?
What are proactive ways through which employees can mobilize their job resources?
How do meso and macro (e.g. institutional) influences interact with individual sensemaking
and behaviours in the development and effects of job resources?
Which HR strategies are most effective in fostering which employee job resources?
In what ways can organizations offer tailored job resources to their employees?
In line with the mission of AP:IR, we particularly encourage submissions with an international focus or using samples of emergent markets, developing countries or contexts in which resources are likely to be scarce.
The deadline for submission of manuscripts is October 20, 2017. Submissions will be accepted between 1 October and 20 October 2017. All manuscripts are expected to follow the Applied Psychology: An International Review submission guidelines and are subject to the regular double blind review process. Please select ‘special issue’ as the manuscript type in the submission system. Interested authors are encouraged to send any questions regarding the special issue to the Guest Editors.
Bakker, A., Daniels, K. (eds) (2012). A Day in the Life of A Happy Worker. London: Psychology Press. p. 169.
Daniels, K., Boocock, G., Glover, J., Hartley, R., Holland, J. (2009). An experience sampling study of learning, affect, and the Demands Control Support model. Journal of Applied
Psychology, 94, 1003-1017.
Deelstra, J. T., Peeters, M. C. W., Schaufeli Wilmar B., Stroebe, W., Zijlstra, F. R. H., & van Doornen, L. P. (2003). Recieving intrumental support at work: When help is not welcome. Journal of Applied Psychology, 88(2), 324–331.
Demerouti, E., Bakker, A. B., Nachreiner, F., & Schaufeli, W. B. (2001). The job demandsresources model of burnout. Journal of Applied Psychology, 86(3), 499–512.
Grant, A. M., & Parker, S. K. (2009). 7 Redesigning Work Design Theories: The Rise of Relational and Proactive Perspectives. The Academy of Management Annals, 3, 317- 375.
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Halbesleben, J. R., Neveu, J. P., Paustian-Underdahl, S. C., & Westman, M. 2014. Getting to the “COR” Understanding the Role of Resources in Conservation of Resources Theory. Journal of Management, 40: 1334-1364.
Hobfoll, S. E. (1989). Conservation of resources: A new attempt at conceptualizing stress. American Psychologist, 44, 513-524.
ILO (2001). Guidelines on occupational safety and health management systems. Geneva: International Labor Office.
Karasek, R. A. (1979). Job demands, job decision latitude, and mental strain: Implications for job redesign. Administrative Science Quarterly, 24, 285–308.
Nielsen, K., Abildgaard, J.S., Daniels, K. (in press). Putting context into organizational intervention design: Using tailored questionnaires to measure initiatives for worker well-being Human Relations.
Parker, S.K., Van den Broeck, A., & Holman, D. (2017). Work Design Influences: A Synthesis of Multi-Level Factors that Affect The Design of Work. Academy of Management Annals, 11, 267-308.
Schwartz, B. (2000). Self-determination. The tyranny of freedom. American Psychologistsychologist, 55(1), 79–88.
Tavares, S.M., van Knippenberg, D., & Van Dick, R. (2016). Organizational identification and “currencies of exchange”: Integrating social identity and social exchange perspectives. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 46 (1), 34-45.
Van Veldhoven, M. & Peccei, R. (2015). Well-being and performance at work: The role of context. London: Psychology Press.
Warr, P.B. (1987). Work, unemployment and mental health. Oxford: Oxford University Press.