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Psychology Connected: Work, Pressure or Pleasure?

Thursday 30 November 2023
Psychology Connected
Pieter de la Court, central hall

On Thursday afternoon 30 November, the sixth edition of Psychology Connected will take place. An event to which the entire Psychology Institute is invited to engage in a conversation over drinks about a better university and society. What do those look like and how do we get there?

Work, pressure or pleasure?

Most people spend most of their week at work. All the more important to do work that gives you pleasure, satisfaction and meaning. 'Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life,' writer Mark Twain is reported to have said. However, even for those who love their work, it is often a source of tension and stress. Twenty percent of Dutch employees experience excessive work pressure, and one in six employees struggles with burnout symptoms. The university environment is also characterised by high work pressure; according to research by the Association of Universities, one-third of academic staff feels 'completely exhausted' at the end of the day.

Why is this the case? And who is responsible? Should employees simply say 'no' more often and attend assertiveness training? Is it primarily the responsibility of universities to implement structural policy changes? And how can we ensure that work becomes not only less stressful but also more rewarding and enjoyable?


Marieke Adriaanse

Marieke Adriaanse is professor of Behavioural Interventions in Population Health Management, member of the Academia in Motion team and ambassador of Recognition and Rewards. 





Chris Riddell

Chris Riddell is a PhD student in the Cognitive Psychology unit, where he researches how emotion recognition works and influences decision-making. He also represents the interests of PhD students at the Institute of Psychology as a PhD representative.

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