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Can qualitative job insecurity instigate workplace incivility? The moderating roles of self-compassion and rumination

Shanshan Qian (Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, Guangzhou, China)
Vivien K.G. Lim (National University of Singapore, Singapore, Singapore)
Yongduan Gao (Business School, Nankai University, Tianjin, China) (Institute of Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences, Beijing Normal University at Zhuhai, Zhuhai, China)

Career Development International

ISSN: 1362-0436

Article publication date: 30 August 2022

Issue publication date: 15 September 2022




This study examines why and when qualitative job insecurity (JI) leads to instigated workplace incivility.


The authors collected data from 227 Chinese full-time employees from multiple organizations at two time points. Structural equation modeling was used to test hypotheses.


Results show that qualitative JI is positively related to instigated workplace incivility through negative emotions; this indirect relationship is weaker among employees with higher self-compassion and stronger among employees with higher rumination.


The authors shift the predominant focus on the predictor of instigated workplace incivility from quantitative JI to qualitative JI. Based on the transactional model of stress and the stressor–emotion model of counterproductive work behavior (CWB), they provide new theoretical insights on why qualitative JI affects workplace incivility and identify new boundary conditions that affect employees' reactions to qualitative JI.



This study was supported by the National Social Science Fund of China (Grant Number 17BGL104), and the Singapore Ministry of Education Academic Research Tier 1 Fund (Grant Number 317-000-145-115).


Qian, S., Lim, V.K.G. and Gao, Y. (2022), "Can qualitative job insecurity instigate workplace incivility? The moderating roles of self-compassion and rumination", Career Development International, Vol. 27 No. 5, pp. 511-525.



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