Research

Completed programs and current topics

The Research page is divided into three subsections which can be accessed by scrolling down or jumping via the submenu below.

Completed research programs

Research topics

The most important topics that I am currently working on.

  • Extending the Job Demands-Resources model

The proposed research program seeks to extend the Job Demands-Resources (JD−R) model, a recently developed and increasingly used model in work and organizational psychology to explain the antecedents of negative (burnout) and positive (work engagement) aspects of employee well−being. Three extensions are envisioned: (1) integrating positive (engaging) and negative (disengaging) leadership into the model; (2) including employee learning and development as an additional outcome; and (3) applying the JD−R at the aggregated team level. These extensions are pursued in interdisciplinary research collaboration with occupational medicine (burnout), labor pedagogy (employee learning) and human resources management (leadership).

  • Conceptualization and measurement of employee’s mental condition

It is likewise important for both research and practice that well-validated tools are available to assess employee’s mental condition. Moreover, knowledge about its antecedents and consequences are essential for interventions to improve that condition. In my research I focus on four topics:

Work engagement is defined as a positive, fulfilling, work-related state of mind that is characterized by vigor (i.e. high levels of energy and mental resilience), dedication (i.e., exceptionally strong involvement in one’s work), and absorption (i.e., being totally engrossed in one’s work). The concept is assessed by the Utrecht Work Engagement Scale (UWES).

Burnout is a negative, chronic work-related state that is primarily characterized by mental exhaustion and mental distance. The use of today’s most popular burnout questionnaire – the Maslach Burnout Inventory – has been questioned, particular by practitioners, so that an alternative questionnaire has been developed together with an international research consortium: the Burnout Assessment Tool (BAT) (read more on the website of the project).

Workaholism or work addiction is characterized by an irresistible inner drive to work very hard; it is a combination of working compulsively and excessively. Both components are assessed by the Dutch Work Addiction Scale (DUWAS).

Job boredom is characterized by under-stimulation (i.e. low arousal) and high dissatisfaction and can be measured by the Dutch Boredom Scale (DUBS).

  • Improving mental health and wellbeing in hospitals

A large-scale, international multi-centre study is carried out on improving mental health and well being of hospital staff that is funded by the EU-Horizon-2020 scheme. Essentially, the effects are assessed of job redesign according to the principes of Magnet Hospitals on physician’s and and nurses’ levels of burn-out and work engagement (Magnet4Europe)

Research Partners