In recent years, science, the public debate and politics have increasingly focused their attention on the associations between working conditions on the one hand, and mental disorders on the other. In the current discussion, it is assumed that more and more workers experience stress and psychological trouble due to intensified demands and an increasing workload; and thus suffer from mental disorders. The 'Stress report Germany' investigates the extent to which employees in Germany currently are exposed to psychological stress and psychological demands at work. It also describes the occurrence of those working conditions, which - as resources - have been shown to have positive effects. Moreover, it deals with a) changes in experienced stress, b) the extent to which people have the feeling that they are able to fulfil requirements and c) the impact of stress and strain at work. In addition, comparisons over time and with neighbouring European countries are being made, which allow the creation of time trend evaluations and benchmarks. Also, associations between demands and resources on the one hand, and stress and stress related outcomes on the other have been investigated. In special focus chapters, recent data and results from research on important work related issues (speed and amount of work, working hours, leadership, multitasking, restructuring) and their effects (presenteeism, cardiovascular diseases) are presented.
The results of the 'Stress report Germany' are based on the sixth wave of the BIBB/BAuA employee survey, which has been carried out regularly since 1979, with the added participation of the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health from 1998/99. Thus, between October 2011 and March 2012, a total of 20,036 workers were interviewed by phone. Of the sample, 17,562 employees were included in the analyses. The report shows hardly any changes regarding the demands and resources since the last survey, in 2005/2006. But this does not mean that there is now an 'all clear', as demands on the content of work and organisation have stabilised at a fairly high level. Furthermore, the level of perceived stress as well as the number of health complaints have increased. In addition, there are large differences between specific groups, which can be seen in the patterns of demands, resources, stress, and the effects of strain by age, sex, industry and occupation. On the basis of such differentiated analyses, needs for action and work place design should be formulated. Psychological stress and negative health consequences are not always, nor automatically, a result of exposure to stressors. Rather, the level and the sum of demands, as well as the extent of available resources and their interaction, play a meaningful role. For the purposes of prevention, the development of such groupspecific profiles regarding demands and resources is therefore of great importance.
Please download the complete report "Stress report Germany 2012" (in German only).
Stressreport Deutschland 2012.
1. edition. Dortmund: Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin 2012.
ISBN: 978-3-88261-725-2, pages 210, paper, PDF file
© Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health