Research Publications

The Mutuality and Reciprocity Lab is committed to producing high quality research that makes meaningful contributions to the literature on employee-employer relationships from a theoretical, methodological, and practical point of view. Below you can find our 2013 publications. Enjoy the read!


Does financial hardship explain differences between Belgian and South African unemployed regarding experiences of unemployment, employment commitment, and job search behaviour? 

Vleugels, W., Rothmann, S., Griep, Y., & De Witte, H. (Psychologica Belgica, 2013).

The purpose of this study was to investigate whether Belgian and South African unemployed differed regarding three psychological dimensions of unemployment: affect (experiences of unemployment), attitudes (employment commitment), and behaviour (job search intensity). Moreover, we expected country of residence to indirectly influence unemployed people’s experiences, employment commitment, and job search intensity via financial hardship. A cross-sectional survey design was used to test our hypotheses. Data were sampled from unemployed people in the Brussels area in Belgium (N = 305), and the Potchefstroom area in South Africa (N = 381). The results indicated that, compared to the Belgian unemployed, the South African unemployed experienced their unemployment as more negative, were more committed towards employment and more intensively searched for work. Moreover, country of residence indirectly influenced unemployed people’s experiences, employment commitment, and job search intensity via financial hardship. Some policy recommendations are suggested.

Keywords: unemployment, affective experience, employment commitment, job search, South Africa, Belgium