How dentists cope with their job demands and stay engaged: The moderating role of job resources

Jari J. Hakanen, Arnold B. Bakker, Evangelia Demerouti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

334 Citations (Scopus)


This study focuses on job demands, job resources, and work engagement among 1,919 Finnish dentists employed in the public sector. Based on the Job Demands - Resources model, it was first predicted that the inverse relationship between job demands (e.g. workload, physical environment) and work engagement would be weaker when dentists had many resources (e.g. variability in the required professional skills, peer contacts). Second, using the Conservation of Resources theory it was hypothesized that job resources are most beneficial in maintaining work engagement under conditions of high job demands. The data were based on a postal questionnaire with a response rate of 71%. The dentists were split into two random groups in order to cross-validate the results. A set of hierarchical regression analyses resulted in 17 out of 40 significant interactions (40%). Four out of 20 possible interaction effects could be cross-validated showing, for example, that variability in professional skills mitigated the negative effect of qualitative workload on work engagement and, in addition, boosted work engagement when the qualitative workload was high. The main conclusion is that job resources are useful in coping with the high demands in dentistry and help dentists to stay engaged.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-487
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Oral Sciences
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Conservation of resources
  • Job demands - resources model
  • Work engagement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Dentistry


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