Research from several countries indicates that university lecturers and researchers are particularly vulnerable to work-related stress from various sources. This chapter draws on the findings of research conducted by the authors in the UK over several years to highlight the value of a benchmarking approach in monitoring the well-being of academic employees. The literature on the stressors and strains experienced by academics is initially reviewed. The findings of three studies using a well-established framework to assess psychosocial hazards in the university sector in the UK are then presented and discussed. Except for job control, respondents reported lower well-being for each of the seven specified hazards than recommended, with evidence of deterioration over time in some areas. The implications of these findings and the value of supplementing the benchmarking approach with hazards reflecting the current working context are discussed. Priority areas for interventions to enhance well-being among academic employees are identified, and topics for future research proposed.
Gail Kinman and Siobhan Wray
Andrew J. Clements, Gail Kinman and Jacqui Hart
Prison officers are at greater risk of work-related stress than most other occupations in the UK. The rates of mental health problems and burnout in the profession are also comparatively high. Challenges to the well-being of prison staff include heavy workloads, lack of autonomy and support, low resources, role stressors and exposure to aggression and violence. In this chapter the authors draw on research conducted by themselves and others that identifies the key stressors experienced by UK prison officers and the implications for their well-being and job performance. Particular focus is placed on their research that has utilized the Health and Safety Executive Management Standards framework to diagnose the psychosocial hazards experienced by prison staff, but other stressors, such as personal experiences of aggression and violence, poor recovery opportunities and presenteeism, are also considered. They argue that carefully targeted, multilevel interventions are needed to address the challenges faced by the sector and identify priorities for future research.