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Title: Self-determination theory: A theoretical and empirical overview in occupational health psychology
Authors: Van den Broeck, Anja
Vansteenkiste, Maarten
De Witte, Hans
Issue Date: 2008
Publisher: Nottingham University Press
Host Document: Occupational health psychology: European perspectives on research, education, and practice. edition:Vol 3 pages:63-88
Abstract: The present chapter presents Self-Determination Theory (SDT; Deci & Ryan, 2000; Vansteenkiste, Ryan, & Deci, in press) and points at its applicability for occupational health psychology. Over some 40 years of research, SDT has developed into a grand theory of human motivation and optimal functioning. The theory has been applied to various life domains including education, exercising, development, parenting and relationships. Recently, the theory was introduced in the field of occupational health psychology and several empirical contributions have now provided support for its validity (Gagné & Deci, 2005; Scheldon, Turban, Brown, Barrick, & Judge, 2003). Within this chapter, we provide a conceptual overview of SDT and review the empirical findings that have supported its theoretical assumptions. We start with an outline of SDT's meta-theoretical assumptions. We then describe three important themes within SDT, that is, 1) the distinction between qualitative different types of behavioural regulation, labelled as the 'why' of behaviour, 2) the differentiation between qualitative different goal orientations, conceptualised as the 'what' of behaviour and 3) the concept of basic psychological need satisfaction. We furthermore discuss job design and leadership style, which represent two important organisational aspects to which SDT has been fruitfully applied. We conclude with a summary of SDT’s most important contributions for occupational health psychology.
Description: We would like to thank Willy Lens, Hein Huyghe and Bart Neyrinck for their comments on a first draft of this chapter.
ISBN: 978-1-904761-82-2
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IHb
Appears in Collections:Centre for Motivation Psychology (-)
Occupational & Organisational Psychology and Professional Learning - miscellaneous
Work, Organisational and Personnel Psychology
Research Centre for Work and Organisation Studies (WOS Bxl), Campus Brussels
Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) - miscellaneous

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