Confused Professionals?: Capacities to cope with pressures on professional work

C. Schott, Daphne Van Kleef, M. Noordegraaf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Public professionalism is increasingly subject to organizational and societal pressures, which has led to ambiguity concerning its nature. Professionals face conflicting situations due to potential clashes between multifaceted professional, organizational, and societal factors. This raises questions about how these factors affect professional work, how professionals experience conflicts and how they cope. We investigate such conflicts, confusion, and coping strategies in a group of veterinary inspectors. Using semi-structured interviews, we analyse their work and link the resulting insights to different perspectives on professionalism. We show that workers experience conflicts as less stressful when they accept organizational factors, or when they are able to enact a more integrated set of professional/organizational work principles. We call this organizing professionalism. We trace factors that hinder and favour such organizing coping strategies.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPublic Management Review
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2015


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