Health in employment contexts

Our first studies on health in employment contexts were conducted as part of an organisational development project for a European aircraft manufacturing company that sought to maintain and increase productivity using proactive health management. Over the course of the project, we were able to identify work characteristics (e.g. overextension due to workload, adverse social climate) associated with the state of vital exhaustion, an independent psychological risk factor in cardiovascular disease. Vital exhaustion can occur as a result of prolonged periods of exertion and stress. In several follow-up studies with company employees, we examined the biological mechanisms that could cause vital exhaustion to develop into cardiovascular disease.

In follow-up projects, we investigated potential psychobiological risk as well as protective factors connected to health in employment contexts. Another important focus in our research and work is the identification of potential new health indicators to help us evaluate health promotion measures and their modulation via intervention (e.g. through corporate stress management training).