Values and work environment: Mapping 32 occupations

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The study addresses the relationship between values and occupations. Israeli workers (N=652; mean age=47; 43% male) in 32 occupations reported their values using the Portrait Value Questionnaire (Schwartz, Melech, Lehmann, Burgess, Harris, & Owens, 2001), and value scores were aggregated within occupations. Occupations were classified according to the Holland (1985) typology. Enterprising work environments correlated negatively with universalism values. Social environments correlated positively with benevolence and universalism values and negatively with power and achievement. The artistic environment correlated negatively with conformity values. Investigative environments correlated positively with self-direction values and negatively with tradition. A COPLOT analysis of occupational value priorities yielded meaningful clusters of occupations, each characterized by a distinct value profile, and fitting the Holland typology. The findings point to the importance of values in vocational behavior.


Cette recherche s'intŕresse à la relation entre les valeurs et les professions. Des professionnels israéliens (N=652; âge moyen: 47; hommes: 43%) exerçant 32 professions distinctes, ont reporté leurs valeurs au moyen du Portrait Value Questionnaire (Schwartz et al., 2001): les scores de valeurs ont été regroupés selon les professions, et les professions classées selon la typologie de Holland. Les résultats montrent que les environnements de travail de type entrepreneurial sont corrélés négativement avec les valeurs d'universalisme. Les professions du type social sont corrélés positivement avec les valeurs de bienveillance et d'universalisme et négativement avec le pouvoir et l'accomplissement social. L'environnement artistique est négativement corrélé avec les valeurs de conformité. L'environnement de type investigatif est positivement corrélé avec l'autonomie et négativement avec la tradition. Une analyse COPLOT montre des clusters de professions caractérisés chacun par un profil de valeur, et ceci conformément à la typologie de Holland. Les résultats indiquent l'importance des valeurs dans l'orientation.

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This work of the first author was supported by a Kreitman Foundation fellowship, while he was at Ben Gurion University. This project was supported by a grant from the Recanati Fund of the School of Business Administration at the Hebrew University to the second author. Data collection was supported by grants from The Israel Science Foundation (grant No. 921/02-1) and from the NCJW Center for Development in Education to Shalom Schwartz.

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Knafo, A., Sagiv, L. Values and work environment: Mapping 32 occupations. Eur J Psychol Educ 19, 255–273 (2004) doi:10.1007/BF03173223

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Key words

  • Career Development
  • Occupational choice
  • Values
  • Work environment