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Revista Psicologia Organizações e Trabalho

On-line version ISSN 1984-6657


NOGUEIRA, José Henrique Vilches  and  FREITAS, Lêda Gonçalves de. Psychodynamics of stress: a study among workers in research, development, and innovation. Rev. Psicol., Organ. Trab. [online]. 2015, vol.15, n.2, pp. 133-145. ISSN 1984-6657.

This study aims to investigate the general psychodynamics of stress among workers in a research center of a Brazilian public technological innovation company. The assumption underlying this research is that the productivist contemporary context, through the ideological support of excellence, performance, and productivity, subverts the meaning of the work of the scientist. Given this change in meaning, suffering appears by means of the term stress, used in a broad sense. In this study, stress was taken as representative of work overload. To collect data, we used a qualitative approach. We set up a group of ten volunteer participants and conducted seven collective interviews. Data analysis used the technique of analysis of units of meaning (ANS). Based on the results, the attribution of meaning links stress to work overload. In the context of suffering, it represents sensations of physical or emotional exhaustion; difficulties in separating what is inside and outside of work; double shifts; the aggregation of bureaucratic functions with technical functions; lacking or poor physical or mental conditions for carrying out the work; perception of lack of time. In the area of defensive strategies, there is the movement of self-acceleration, denial, rationalization, and idealization. In the area of contemporary pathologies, when overload takes shape in the context of the centrality of work by exacerbating the need for recognition, stress is expressed as individual affective idealization of a hero and the imaginary social generalization of science with a high degree of certainty.

Keywords : Stress; psychodynamics of work; researchers.

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