Research methodology is currently a central issue in terms of work-related stress evaluation. The risk factors connected to this dimension are in effect qualitative and therefore more difficult to evaluate than traditional risk typologies, for which an essentially quantitative approach is used. The literature contains many studies that have adopted an integrated approach, using both subjective and objective methods of occupational stress evaluation (Semmer, Grebner & Elfering, 2004; Spector, 2006). When considering how broad the objective parameter category is, comparing studies, as well as proposing a synthesis, is quite difficult. Different research methods have been used and the objective parameters collected are mainly based on context and position, although one of the most widely applied indices is days away from work. Yet, some interesting correlations between objective and subjective measures emerge in several study surveys, pointing to the need to further explore methodologies and techniques at the basis of the studies themselves. Likewise, subjective measures use several and diverse research instruments. Within such an integrated approach and in accordance with the most significant European directives, the Authors of this study evaluated work-related stress in various organizations through the Q-Bo test (De Carlo, Falco & Capozza, 2008), which allows to evaluate the subjective perceptions of the various stress sources, as well as their consequences also through reference indices. As is well-known, subjective measures bring together several variables, such as, for instance, social desirability and negative affectivity, which can influence their validity. Moreover, their perspective is necessarily partial. The Authors therefore deemed it appropriate to also devise a method that might be more sensitive to “objective” dimensions. Such procedure, called V.I.S. Method – Valutazione per indicatori di stress (Stress indicators evaluation) – is based on a “multi-method” evaluation approach articulated in several phases and shorter, as it does not involve all workers. It is founded on a theoretical model in which the magnitude of work-related stress risk, measurable through expert focus groups (both within the sector and belonging to the specific organization) is correlated to objective indicators evaluation. By means of such method, the effects of risk factors on workers’ health are evaluated, detected through the stakeholders’ judgments, disease and symptoms assessed by the competent practitioner – where present – and forewarnings. The method is made up of 4 instruments that can be used by company stakeholders, the competent practitioner, and human resource specialists. The work that will be presented at the conference will describe the results of a large study carried out in an organization with about 2,000 workers. The survey was aimed at evaluating the risk of exposure to work-related stress, and detect the applicability and the advantages of using an integrated analysis methodology. The research carried out has emphasized interesting correlations between objective and subjective indicators on the empirical level, which carries a very relevant theoretical and applicative significance.

An evalutation of work related stress risk through the integration of objective and subjective measures: the Qu-Bo test and the V.I.S method

FALCO, ALESSANDRA;GIRARDI, DAMIANO;KRAVINA, LUCA;DAL CORSO, LAURA;DE CARLO, NICOLA
2010

Abstract

Research methodology is currently a central issue in terms of work-related stress evaluation. The risk factors connected to this dimension are in effect qualitative and therefore more difficult to evaluate than traditional risk typologies, for which an essentially quantitative approach is used. The literature contains many studies that have adopted an integrated approach, using both subjective and objective methods of occupational stress evaluation (Semmer, Grebner & Elfering, 2004; Spector, 2006). When considering how broad the objective parameter category is, comparing studies, as well as proposing a synthesis, is quite difficult. Different research methods have been used and the objective parameters collected are mainly based on context and position, although one of the most widely applied indices is days away from work. Yet, some interesting correlations between objective and subjective measures emerge in several study surveys, pointing to the need to further explore methodologies and techniques at the basis of the studies themselves. Likewise, subjective measures use several and diverse research instruments. Within such an integrated approach and in accordance with the most significant European directives, the Authors of this study evaluated work-related stress in various organizations through the Q-Bo test (De Carlo, Falco & Capozza, 2008), which allows to evaluate the subjective perceptions of the various stress sources, as well as their consequences also through reference indices. As is well-known, subjective measures bring together several variables, such as, for instance, social desirability and negative affectivity, which can influence their validity. Moreover, their perspective is necessarily partial. The Authors therefore deemed it appropriate to also devise a method that might be more sensitive to “objective” dimensions. Such procedure, called V.I.S. Method – Valutazione per indicatori di stress (Stress indicators evaluation) – is based on a “multi-method” evaluation approach articulated in several phases and shorter, as it does not involve all workers. It is founded on a theoretical model in which the magnitude of work-related stress risk, measurable through expert focus groups (both within the sector and belonging to the specific organization) is correlated to objective indicators evaluation. By means of such method, the effects of risk factors on workers’ health are evaluated, detected through the stakeholders’ judgments, disease and symptoms assessed by the competent practitioner – where present – and forewarnings. The method is made up of 4 instruments that can be used by company stakeholders, the competent practitioner, and human resource specialists. The work that will be presented at the conference will describe the results of a large study carried out in an organization with about 2,000 workers. The survey was aimed at evaluating the risk of exposure to work-related stress, and detect the applicability and the advantages of using an integrated analysis methodology. The research carried out has emphasized interesting correlations between objective and subjective indicators on the empirical level, which carries a very relevant theoretical and applicative significance.
Proceedings of the IAREP/SABE/ICABEEP 2010 Conference
9783899676518
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11577/2485456
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