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Member Research and Reports

Member Research and Reports

UIC: New Research Finds Worker Well-being Influenced by Job Categories

It may come as no surprise that workers with higher wages have a stronger sense of well-being.  New research from University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) School of Public Health faculty is digging deeper into workers’ sense of well-being.  Their findings, published in the Preventive Medicine Reports journal, indicate that workers’ well-being is higher in some jobs than in others.

“In general, higher wage jobs tend to have higher levels of well-being, but in a field like manufacturing, workers with higher wages still had lower levels of well-being on average [than those in other groups, like professional workers],” said Dr. Emily Stiehl, clinical assistant professor of health policy and administration.  “Wage in and of itself may not be enough to explain differences across categories.”

The article, “Worker well-being in the United States: finding variation across job categories,” identified overall well-being was higher among business owners, professionals and managers, along with farming and fishing workers.  Sense of well-being rated lower among clerical and office workers, the service industry, manufacturing sectors and transportation workers.

Using data from Gallup, with access provide by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Dr. Stiehl and Dr. Naoko Muramatsu, professor of community health sciences, along with colleagues from the NIOSH at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Queens College, identified how facets of well-being beyond worker pay, including sense of purpose, community, and physical well-being, differed between occupational groups.

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