Conceptualising and Measuring Work Identity

South-African Perspectives and Findings

  • Paul G.W. Jansen
  • Gert Roodt

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Gert Roodt, Paul G. W. Jansen, Freddie Crous
    Pages 1-20
  3. Concept and Theory

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 21-21
    2. F. Chris Bothma, Sandra Lloyd, Svetlana Khapova
      Pages 23-51
    3. Anne Crafford, Byron G. Adams, Tamsen Saayman, Claartje Vinkenburg
      Pages 53-86
    4. Roslyn de Braine, Gert Roodt
      Pages 87-116
    5. F. Chris Bothma, Gert Roodt, Sylvia van de Bunt-Kokhuis
      Pages 117-147
  4. Exploratory Analyses

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 149-149
    2. Roslyn de Braine, F. Chris Bothma, Paul G. W. Jansen
      Pages 151-182
  5. Testing for Causality

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 183-183
    2. Francois Bester, Anita Bosch, Matthijs Bal
      Pages 185-201
  6. Conclusions, Implications and Recommendations

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 203-203
    2. Roslyn de Braine, F. Chris Bothma, Francois Bester, Paul G. W. Jansen
      Pages 205-232
    3. Gert Roodt, Paul G. W. Jansen, Sylvia van de Bunt-Kokhuis
      Pages 233-247
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 249-254

About this book


This book provides a systematic overview on issues and challenges related to work identity and identification at work in the ‘new’ South African workplace. It shares results and measures of a work identity research project that was conducted in a variety of modern South African workplaces. It looks at the concept of work identity in the light of a keen and growing interest in why people are becoming attached to, involved in, engaged with, or committed to their work. Still a relatively unexplored concept, built on the foundations of different identity theory streams, the concept of work identity provides a fundamental reconsideration of explaining engaging behaviours at work. Against the backdrop of a changing political and economic landscape and the impact these radical changes had on the South African workplace, the main research question of the project was the South African employees’ question ‘Who am I at work?’. In search of the answer to that question, the book explores the impact of South African employees’ life spheres and life roles on their choice of work-related identification foci. It further explores how identity work tactics and strategies are being used to develop and define their own work identities, resulting in the conceptualisation and development of a work-based identity measure.


Identity Work Identity Work Strategies National Development Plan Objective Work-based Identity Post-apartheid South African Economy Post-apartheid South African Workplace Role Identity Theories Social Identity Structural Equation Model (SEM) Subjective Work-based Identity Work Engagement Work Identity Work-based Identity Operationalization Work-based Self-concept Workplace Diversity

Editors and affiliations

  • Paul G.W. Jansen
    • 1
  • Gert Roodt
    • 2
  1. 1.VU University AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.University of JohannesburgJohannesburgSouth Africa

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Behavioral Science
  • Print ISBN 978-94-017-9241-7
  • Online ISBN 978-94-017-9242-4
  • Buy this book on publisher's site