Integrating Motivational, Social, and Contextual Work Design Features: A Meta-Analytic Summary and Theoretical Extension of the Work Design Literature

Stephen E. Humphrey, Jennifer D. Nahrgang, Frederick P. Morgeson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

879 Scopus citations


The authors developed and meta-analytically examined hypotheses designed to test and extend work design theory by integrating motivational, social, and work context characteristics. Results from a summary of 259 studies and 219,625 participants showed that 14 work characteristics explained, on average, 43% of the variance in the 19 worker attitudes and behaviors examined. For example, motivational characteristics explained 25% of the variance in subjective performance, 2% in turnover perceptions, 34% in job satisfaction, 24% in organizational commitment, and 26% in role perception outcomes. Beyond motivational characteristics, social characteristics explained incremental variances of 9% of the variance in subjective performance, 24% in turnover intentions, 17% in job satisfaction, 40% in organizational commitment, and 18% in role perception outcomes. Finally, beyond both motivational and social characteristics, work context characteristics explained incremental variances of 4% in job satisfaction and 16% in stress. The results of this study suggest numerous opportunities for the continued development of work design theory and practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1332-1356
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2007



  • job design
  • performance
  • satisfaction
  • social support
  • work design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology

Cite this