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Modeling cause-and-effect relationships among variables affecting work stress based on fuzzy DEMATEL method

Mohsen Mahdinia (Department of Occupational Safety and Health Engineering, Faculty of Health, Qom University of Medical Sciences, Qom, Iran)
Mohsen Sadeghi Yarandi (Department of Occupational Health Engineering, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran)
Hossein Fallah (Occupational Safety and Hygiene Engineering Department, Health Faculty, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences and Health Services, Yazd, Iran)
Ahmad Soltanzadeh (Department of Occupational Safety and Health Engineering, Faculty of Health, Research Center for Environmental Pollutants, Qom University of Medical Sciences, Qom, Iran)

Journal of Public Mental Health

ISSN: 1746-5729

Article publication date: 11 October 2022

Issue publication date: 28 November 2022

64

Abstract

Purpose

Several variables can affect work stress. This study aims to model the cause-and-effect relationships among different variables that can predict work stress based on one of the most important fuzzy multicriteria decision-making methods used to investigate the cause-and-effect relationships among variables.

Design/methodology/approach

This study was conducted in 2020, including 17 experts in safety management, occupational health and work psychology, based on the fuzzy decision-making trial and evaluation laboratory method as a robust approach to identify the cause-and-effect relationships among different variables.

Findings

Shift work, lack of job satisfaction, mental health, mental overload, fatigue, job security, sleep disorders, environmental discomfort, work pressure, job knowledge (this could mean expertise/level of qualifications/familiarity with the job), work complexity and role conflict were found to be the most significant variables affecting work stress. Moreover, the cause-and-effect model of relationships among variables showed that shift work and lack of job satisfaction are root causes, and mental health, fatigue, mental workload, sleep disorder and environmental discomfort are direct causes.

Originality/value

Although the results of this study demonstrate that work stress can be influenced by 12 different variables, the modeling results show that some variables, such as shift work and lack of job satisfaction, can directly or indirectly impact other variables and thus result in work stress.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to express their gratitude to the expert panel for their cooperation.

This work was supported by the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Technology of Qom University of Medical Sciences and Health Services [Grant number 981085 and ethical code IR.MUQ.REC.1399.070].

Citation

Mahdinia, M., Sadeghi Yarandi, M., Fallah, H. and Soltanzadeh, A. (2022), "Modeling cause-and-effect relationships among variables affecting work stress based on fuzzy DEMATEL method", Journal of Public Mental Health, Vol. 21 No. 4, pp. 341-356. https://doi.org/10.1108/JPMH-03-2022-0023

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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