This research seminar is hosted by the Institute of Work Psychology (IWP) at Sheffield University Management School.
Dr Glorian Sorensen, PhD, MPH, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Working conditions are often root causes of poor health and safety outcomes, and represent critical pathways through which integrated policies, programs and practices shape a range of outcomes. An integrated approach coordinates protection from work-related safety and health hazards with promotion of worker health and well-being. Working conditions include the physical work environment as well as the organization of work, such as job tasks and demands, and psychosocial factors on the job. This presentation will describe a conceptual framework for focusing on working conditions as drivers of worker safety, health and wellbeing. We will examine the value added by this integrated approach. We will explore the evidence for its effectiveness, and illustrate how improving working conditions can optimize employee and employer outcomes. We will also examine ways in which a systems approach can contribute to building a culture of health and safety within an organization.
Glorian Sorensen, PhD, MPH, is Professor of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, and Director of the Center for Community-Based Research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
The core of Dr. Sorensen’s research is randomized worksite- and community-based studies that test the effectiveness of theory-driven interventions targeting individual and organizational change. She is the Director and Principal Investigator of the Center for Work, Health and Wellbeing at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, funded as a Center of Excellence by the National Institute for Safety and Health and its Total Worker Health® Program. She is also the Director of the Center for Community-Based Research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Her research focuses particularly on designing and testing interventions to be effective for low-income, multi-ethnic working populations, and for use in low-resource settings. Her training in occupational sociology provides a platform for her research focus on the work organization and environment from a systems perspective. Her research has focused on a range of settings, particularly worksites and labor unions. She conducted the first randomized controlled worksite intervention trials to integrate occupational health and health behaviors, and has designed and tested worksite interventions across a range of industries, including manufacturing, construction, health care, social service, and transportation, and with small and large worksites. These interventions aim in particular to address disparities in worker health outcomes and to be effective for low-income, multi-ethnic populations. Her current research includes a study with low-income food service workers designed to assess and address organizational factors contributing to worker health and safety.