For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

"Psychological effects of complex environments during the life span: A review and theory"

by Schooler, Carmi (1984)


This paper reviews evidence supporting a theory about the psychological effects of complex environments suggested by research on the causal relationships between occupational conditions and psychological functioning. The review indicates that environmental complexity leads to effective cognitive functioning across all stages of the life span. This effect has been found in both sexes, in several nations, and in species other than man. Although the evidence is not as extensive, environmental complexity also appears to lead to a self-directed rather than conformist orientation.


Complex Work, Social Psychology, Environmental Complexity, Psychological Functioning, Cognitive Functioning



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