Developments in work psychology: Emerging issues and future trends
(Fiona Patterson, Institute of Work Psychology, University of SheYeld , UK)

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Introduction

The discipline of work psychology has accomplished a great deal in a short space of time, and is thriving. The . eld has undoubtedly evolved to perform a valuable role in society and in promoting the well-being of employees at work. This advancement can be attributed partially to the growing appreciation of the utility of work psychology in enhancing individual and organizational prosperity. The expertise of both academic and practitioner work psychologists has had an enormous influence in the way many organizations operate, ranging from multinational commercial organizations, through to public-owned companies and the voluntary sector. The review articles presented in this centennial special issue attest to this proposition, and demonstrate the achievements of work psychology over the past few decades.
The intention of this issue is to provide a collection of review papers from some of the leading authors in the . eld, focusing on the theme of the British Psychological Society centenary celebrations, which is ‘Psychology; the state of the science and emerging issues’. The purpose of this discussion paper is to provide a descriptive reflection of the topics presented in this issue, highlighting emergent themes, and presenting some of the apparent inter-dependencies. The brief for authors was to synthesize existing literature in the area, to outline a future research agenda, and to comment on potential implications for applied practice. The topics included are by no means exhaustive, and there are certainly numerous other issues in work psychology that deserve attention. Indeed, the sheer diversity of research areas and spheres of applied practice currently embraced by work psychology is quite remarkable. Over time, attention has extended from a focus at the employee level of analysis towards a breadth of impact in areas spanning organizational strategy, human-computer interaction and the work/non-work divide.
This paper presents an overview of the recurrent themes emerging from the review articles presented in this issue. Five key themes are identi. ed to be considered for future research and practice in work psychology: (1) the transformation of the organizational context, (2) employer demands versus employee choice and the psychological contract, (3) the psychological impact of the changing nature of work, (4) theoretical and methodological advances in the discipline, and (5) developments in the profession more generally.

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