Workplace bullying and sleep - A systematic review and meta-analysis of the research literature
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionSleep Medicine Reviews. 2020, 51, 101289. 10.1016/j.smrv.2020.101289
This systematic review and meta-analysis 1) clarifies and quantifies existing results on the association between exposure to workplace bullying and sleep, 2) evaluates the methodological quality of existing studies, 3) identifies theoretical frameworks used in research, 4) determines moderating and mediating variables, and 5) provides guidelines for future research. Searches for primary studies were conducted in Pubmed, Medline, Embase, PsycINFO and Web of Science. Of the 406 studies identified, 26 fulfilled the inclusion criteria for the qualitative synthesis whereas sixteen studies were included in the meta-analysis (cross sectional effect sizes: 15; N=69,199/prospective effect sizes: 6; N=26,164). Workplace bullying was significantly related to sleep problems in all studies. Across cross-sectional studies, targets of bullying had 2.31 higher odds of reporting sleep problems compared to non-bullied workers. The odds across the prospective studies was 1.62. The quality of evidence for the association between workplace bullying and sleep problems was low to moderate. Only eight studies had a predefined theoretical rationale for the association, and few studies examined mediating and moderating variables or bidirectional associations. The methodological quality of the studies was moderate. Further research is needed to establish the nature, directionality, mechanisms, and conditions of the association between bullying and sleep.