Reintegrating studies of organizations, work and health - some methodological experiences
Författare och institution:
Eva Bejerot (-); Annika Härenstam (Institutionen för arbetsvetenskap)
The dynamics of organizations and healthy work, in Work life in transition, nr 5, s. 140-156
A primary interest throughout this book has been organisations and working conditions, the relationships between them, and their relationships to the labour market context and to health outcomes. These relationships can be studied as causal relations or as selection processes. A single study alone can seldom solve the problems of generalization and hypothesis testing. we argue for a renewed interest in a structural perspective in organization research. Even if the working life is a volatile arena of social life, there are always structures that influence power relations between agents at different levels and in different parts of the local, national and global labour markets. These structures, such as class and gender, maybe stable over time but we cannot take that for granted. They have to be explored and scrutinized over and over again.
Some progress and an increased interest in this issue can be seen, but it is still a big challenge to work-life scientists, organization researchers and occupational health researchers to explore the connection between the structures and processes, conditions and strategies that affect the possibilities for the workers to enjoy a good and healthy working life.
We argue that a theory which borrows elements from organization theories, social stratification theories and occupational health studies is capable of creating a better understanding of the organization of work and working conditions and the health of the workers. Important factors from these areas can be integrated and made intelligible.
In the preceding chapters, several types of data have been analysed with a broad variety of methods. Some studies were explorative, empirically driven, and aimed at generating ideas, theories and hypotheses. Others were theory-driven and used for testing hypotheses to acquire a deeper understanding of phenomena at the workplace and individual levels. This is in line with a mixed methodological approach that has been suggested as appropriate to use when testing elements in an emergent theory. Performing different studies in a sequence has the advantage of spreading experiences from one study to the next by alternating between quantitative and qualitative approaches. Positivistic and interpretative approaches are mutually supportive whether they are achievable within a single study or conducted across different studies, by the same or different researchers.
In this chapter we share some of the problems we have met in our research on working life, and also try to describe the ways we worked some things out, drawing also on the experience of other researchers. We will touch upon both quantitative and qualitative methods, and the message is the same: to try to combine and oscillate between methods, levels and perspectives.
Ämne (baseras på Högskoleverkets indelning av forskningsämnen):
TEKNIK OCH TEKNOLOGIER ->
Produktionsteknik, arbetsvetenskap och ergonomi
TEKNIK OCH TEKNOLOGIER ->
Annan maskinteknik ->
Industriell organisation, administration och ekonomi
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