Developing a gender/sex-sensitive evidence base on relationship between psychosocial work environment and chronic disease

Reasons for the study

Male and female labour force participation rates in Canada have changed dramatically over the last three decades. The percentage of labour force participants who are female increased from 39 per cent to 48 per cent between 1980 and 2011. Despite this increase in female labour market participation, our understanding of how work, including work stress, affects health status is still male-centric. However, there might be important male and female differences in the assessment of work stress, the biological and behavioural reactions to work stress, and the relationship between work stress and risk of subsequent disease. The purpose of this project is to build an evidence base concerning male and female differences in the relationship between the psychosocial work environment and future risk of metabolic diseases.

Objectives of the study

  • Examine gender/sex differences in the association between dimensions of the psychosocial work environment and general work stress and general life stress
  • Examine gender/sex differences in the relationship between the psychosocial work environment and subsequent health behaviour and body mass index (BMI) trajectories over a 16-year period
  • Examine the relationship between the psychosocial work environment and cardiovascular disease in Ontario over a 12-year period (see separate project page under this umbrella on the relationship between prolonged standing and heart disease)

Anticipated results/impact

This project develops a cross-disciplinary and multi-jurisdictional team of researchers for further work in exploring gender and the relationships between work environment and risk of disease.

Related scientific publications

Related research summaries

Project status

Ongoing

Research team

  • Peter Smith, Institute for Work & Health (PI)
  • Cameron Mustard, Institute for Work & Health
  • Chantal Brisson, Universit√© Laval
  • Rick Glazier, Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences

Participating organizaitons

  • Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences
  • Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety

Funded by

Canadian Institutes of Health Research