Videnarbejderens særlige arbejdssituation og muligheder for forebyggelse af arbejdsrelateret stress i videnarbejdet - et kvalitativt studie af arbejdsrelateret stress i videnarbejdet: Et kvalitativt studie af arbejdsrelateret stress i vidensarbejde

    Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesis

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    Work-related stress is an increasing problem in Europe. In Denmark it has been estimated that almost half of the population has experienced stress on a daily basis and that the absence from work, reduced productivity, additional recruiting etc. due to this problem are very costly for both companies and for society. Recent studies also show that there is a correlation between level of education and stress and, correspondingly, that stress is an increasing problem in knowledge-intensive companies. The objective of this project is to investi-gate the organisational opportunities available to managers and employees in knowledge-intensive companies so that they may prevent the occurrence of problems and strains arising from “knowledge-work”. The critical aspect of “knowledge-work” is the work process itself as this is the basis for development of new knowledge. These knowledge-intensive companies employ highly educated and competent people who, in close rela-tionship with both customers and colleagues, apply their personal knowledge to generate new knowledge. The employees are self-managed and work in networks and de-centralised project groups. Earlier studies have stated that knowledge-work offers working conditions which reflect a good psychosocial environment. The studies show that the respondents describe their working life as good and stimulating. But on the other hand, the interviews also reveal aspects of knowledge-work which can cause frustration and stress. The prob-lems experienced have an effect on knowledge production in terms of reduced knowledge-sharing, less time for development, reduced productivity and lower quality. The implication of the organisational characteristics of knowledge-intensive companies is a transfer of the responsibility for ones own production and working-life. Consequently, issues are dealt with informally, individually and incidentally. It is only when problems arise that more support is offered in order to help an employee to cope or to recover. As most workplace initiatives operate at this tertiary level the sources of work-related and organisational stress are not reduced or eliminated. If a company wants to introduce changes that get to the root of the organi-sationally induced stress, it will have to employ an organisation-directed strat-egy. The barriers to implementing stress prevention on the organisational level are numerous and complicated as the changes will involve matters which are closely tied to the employees own work practices. On the other hand, these opportunities can be financially very rewarding in terms of reduced sick-leave, improved quality and quantity of work , and extra time for new projects, - all ultimately resulting in an overall increase in productivity and profitability.
    Original languageDanish
    Place of PublicationKgs- Lymgby
    PublisherDTU, Institut for Produktion og Ledelse
    Number of pages249
    ISBN (Print)978-87-91035-60-0
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2006

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