Occupational Stress and Its Economic Cost in Hong Kong: The Role of Positive Emotions

Seminar Date



Although occupational stress is costly, research on the economic costs of occupational stress in the Asian context remains scarce. This study aims to identify and validate common job stressors and estimate their economic costs in Hong Kong. The role of positive emotions in alleviating the economic costs of job stressors is also examined. The findings obtained from five focus group discussions and a survey (N = 2032) validated five common job stressors: job insecurity; quantitative workload; organizational constraints; interpersonal conflicts; and work/home interface. The annual cost of absenteeism, presenteeism, and medical expenses attributed to job stressors ranged from HK$549.32 million to HK$858.28 million, HK$1.37 billion to HK$2.15 billion, and HK$3.38 billion to HK$11.89 billion respectively. The total annual economic cost of occupational stress, estimated by combining the costs of absenteeism, presenteeism, and medical expenses, was approximately HK$5.30 billion to HK$14.89 billion. Positive emotions were found to be negatively correlated with presenteeism and could buffer the negative impact of job stressors on absenteeism. The theoretical contributions and practical implications of this study are discussed.



Biography of Speaker

Professor Siu Oi Ling’s research interests are in Occupational Health Psychology, specifically occupational stress, psychology of safety and work-life balance. Professor Siu also conducts research in Environmental Psychology and Psychology of Ageing. She was the Editor of International Journal of Stress Management from 2015-2020 and is the Associate Editor of Journal of Occupational Health Psychology since 2015. In the past few years, Professor Siu has been awarded many RGC's GRF (previously Earmarked Research Grants), National Natural Science Foundation (China), Australian Research Council, Quality Education Fund, and research grants by the Occupational Safety & Health Council.

Professor Siu has built up an impressive track record of work in the fields of occupational stress and work-family interface. The sole Chinese scholar recognised by the Work and Family Researchers Network as a 2018 Top 50 Overall Contributor to Work Family Research. Recently, Prof. Siu has been awarded the RGC’s Humanities and Social Sciences Prestigious Fellowship (2020-2021), and listed by Stanford University as Top 2 % scientists in the world (February 2021).



Recommended Citation

Siu, O-l. (2021, May 11). Occupational stress and its economic cost in Hong Kong: The role of positive emotions. Retrieved from https://commons.ln.edu.hk/chair-professor-webinar/6/

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