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Integrating Job Stress and Social Exchange Theories to Predict Employee Strain in Reformed Public Sector Contexts

Posted: 30 Jun 2009  

Andrew Noblet

Deakin University - Deakin Business School

John J. Rodwell

Deakin University

Date Written: July 2009

Abstract

This research examines the organizational characteristics that contribute to employee wellbeing in public sector agencies that have undergone substantial organizational change. Two studies were undertaken, the first involving 2,466 police officers working in a state-based law enforcement agency, whereas the second comprised 1,010 occupationally diverse employees working in a State Government authority. The research was guided by a theoretical framework that begins with a model underpinning many large-scale job stress investigations-the job strain model (JSM)-and is expanded to incorporate widely used social exchange variables (i.e., psychological contract breach and organizational fairness). The results of hierarchical regression analyses from both studies confirm the value of the JSM. There was also strong support for extending the JSM to include the breach and fairness variables; however, proposed interactions between job demands and organizational fairness failed to add to the explanatory value of the model. The implications of these results particularly for public sector organizations that have undergone extensive reforms consistent with New Public Management are discussed.

Suggested Citation

Noblet, Andrew and Rodwell, John J., Integrating Job Stress and Social Exchange Theories to Predict Employee Strain in Reformed Public Sector Contexts (July 2009). Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Vol. 19, Issue 3, pp. 555-578, 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1425964 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jopart/mun019

Andrew Noblet (Contact Author)

Deakin University - Deakin Business School ( email )

Australia

John J. Rodwell

Deakin University

75 Pigdons Road
Victoria, Victoria 3216
Australia

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