Unhealthy Work : Causes, Consequences, Cures book cover
1st Edition

Unhealthy Work
Causes, Consequences, Cures

ISBN 9780415784696
Published March 29, 2017 by Routledge
364 Pages

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Book Description

Work, so fundamental to well-being, has its darker and more costly side. Work can adversely affect our health, well beyond the usual counts of injuries that we think of as 'occupational health'. The ways in which work is organized - its pace and intensity, degree of control over the work process, sense of justice, and employment security, among other things - can be as toxic to the health of workers as the chemicals in the air. These work characteristics can be detrimental not only to mental well-being but to physical health. Scientists refer to these features of work as 'hazards' of the 'psychosocial' work environment. One key pathway from the work environment to illness is through the mechanism of stress; thus we speak of 'stressors' in the work environment, or 'work stress'. This is in contrast to the popular psychological understandings of 'stress', which locate many of the problems with the individual rather than the environment. In this book we advance a social environmental understanding of the workplace and health. The book addresses this topic in three parts: the important changes taking place in the world of work in the context of the global economy (Part I); scientific findings on the effects of particular forms of work organization and work stressors on employees' health, 'unhealthy work' as a major public health problem, and estimates of costs to employers and society (Part II); and, case studies and various approaches to improve working conditions, prevent disease, and improve health (Part III).

Table of Contents


Introduction—Chapter 1

 Beyond the Individual: Connecting Work Environment and Health
Deborah R. Gordon and Peter L. Schnall


 CHAPTER 2 Economic Globalization and Its Effects on Labor
Chrisy Moutsatsos

 CHAPTER 3 The Growing Imbalance: Class, Work, and Health in an Era of Increasing Inequality
Jeffrey V. Johnson

 CHAPTER 4 The Changing Nature of Work in Canada and Other Developed Countries: What Do the Trends Over Time Tell Us?
Peter Smith and John Frank

 CHAPTER 5 The Changing Nature of Work in the United States
Edward Yelin


 CHAPTER 6 The Workplace and Cardiovascular Disease
Paul A. Landsbergis, Peter L. Schnall, and Marnie Dobson

 CHAPTER 7 From Stress to Distress: The Impact of Work on Mental Health
Marnie Dobson and Peter L. Schnall

 CHAPTER 8 Work, Ethnicity, and Health in California
Haiou Yang

 CHAPTER 9 Work, Psychosocial Stressors, and the Bottom Line
Maritza Jauregui and Peter L. Schnall


 CHAPTER 10 Stakeholder Perspectives on Work and Stress: Seeking Common Ground
Deborah R. Gordon, Maritza Jauregui, and Peter L. Schnall

 CHAPTER 11 Interventions to Reduce Job Stress and Improve Work Organization and Worker Health
Paul A. Landsbergis

 CHAPTER 12 Using Participatory Action Research Methodology to Improve Worker Health
Ellen Rosskam

 CHAPTER 13 The MUNI Health and Safety Project: A 26-Year Union-Management Research Collaboration
Ray Antonio, June Fisher, and Ellen Rosskam

 CHAPTER 14 Organizing and Collaborating to Reduce Hotel Workers' Injuries
Mike Casey and Ellen Rosskam

 CHAPTER 15 The Maintenance Cooperation Trust Fund: Combating Worker Exploitation and Unfair Competition through Collective Action with Responsible Employers
Lilia GarcĂ­a

 CHAPTER 16 Occupational and Environmental Medicine in the Twenty-First Century
Dean Baker, Marnie Dobson, and Peter L. Schnall

 CHAPTER 17 Emotional Labor and the Pursuit of Happiness
Stephen Lloyd Smith

 CHAPTER 18 Measuring the Protection of Workers' Health: A National Work Security Index
Ellen Rosskam


 CHAPTER 19 Curing Unhealthy Work
Peter L. Schnall, Marnie Dobson, Ellen Rosskam, and Paul Landsbergis


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Schnall, Peter; Dobson, Marnie; Rosskam, Ellen; Elling, Ray