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Psychosocial Safety Climate (PSC) - Advancement and validation of a tool to assess preparedness to protect workers' psychological health at the organisational level. A BAuA contribution as WHO-CC

Project number: F 2401 Institution: Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) / GESIS Leibniz-Institut für Sozialwissenschaften Status: Ongoing Project Planned end: 2020-12-31


The project constitutes the interface between research on safety climate and work-related stress. Its subject is the concept of "Psychosocial Safety Climate" (PSC) that was developed by an Australian research team. PSC measures an organisation's priorities and commitment to the protection of employee psychological health by surveying employees and is a main target for health-related interventions in organisations. In its current version the PSC tool consists of four dimensions, each of which comprises 3 items. The project aims at developing the PSC tool further, resulting in a validated and revised version which can be applied in Germany and which BAuA will offer for application to international partners as part of its activities in the WHO CC network. Hence, the project takes up the innovative PSC concept and targets those aspects of the tool which primarily need revision and, respectively, further development, namely its dimensionality and the comprehensibility of its items. The basic research questions which will be investigated by applying qualitative and quantitative methods are: Is the construct "Psychosocial Safety Climate" sufficiently covered by the existing items? Do employees understand the items in the sense of the PSC construct? Are the existing items suitable to cover the PSC construct (or each of its dimensions, respectively)? Is it possible to “compress” the PSC instrument without a substantial loss of information?

The further development and validation of the PSC instrument will follow a stepwise procedure: The revised items will be applied in a qualitative pretest including cognitive interviewing and in a quantitative pretest and adapted if necessary before being used in the main study. Additionally, the option of an international application in WHO-collaboration will be examined. As a result, a screening tool will be created in abbreviated form which can be used for national surveillance as well as for risk assessment in the psychosocial area.


Division 3 "Work and Health"

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