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Span J Psychol. 2010 May;13(1):297-308.

Categorization and hierarchy of workplace bullying strategies: a Delphi survey.

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Departamento de Psicología Social, Universidad de Barcelona,. Pg. Vall d'Hebron, 171. 08035 Barcelona, Spain


This paper reports a study of the characteristics of psychological abuse strategies deployed in the workplace (mobbing or workplace bullying). Based on a literature review, the aim of the present study is two fold: firstly to propose a new taxonomy of mobbing strategies and to provide an operational definition for each of them, and secondly, to assess this taxonomy with the aid of several experts, by using a Delphi survey, and to evaluate the severity of each of the mobbing strategies. The experts were asked to evaluate the adequacy and the severity of the definitions for each mobbing strategy. Thirty experts working in various professions (psychology, medicine, law, sociology, etc.) participated in a two-round Delphi survey. The experts estimated that the new taxonomy and the operational definitions were appropriate, establishing content and construct validity. They ranked the workplace bullying strategies in terms of descending importance: strategies of direct nature, followed by indirect strategies. Theoretical implications of the study, its limitations and future research are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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