Work environment structure and psychological ownership: The mediating effects of control

Jon L. Pierce, Michael P. O'driscoll, Anne marie Coghlan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

189 Scopus citations


Current theorists on the psychology of possession highlight control as an important route in the development of feelings of ownership. In the present article, the authors hypothesized that the extent to which individuals experience control over their job and work environment is positively associated with feelings of ownership for their job and the organization. The authors used supervisory report data on work environment structure and self-reports on experienced control and psychological ownership to test for the mediating effects of experienced control in the relationship between the work environment structure and psychological ownership. The authors found that experienced control mediates the relationship between 3 sources of work environment structure—technology, autonomy, and participative decision making—and psychological ownership of the job and (to a lesser extent) the organization. The authors proposed implications of the findings and directions of further research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)507-534
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Social Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1 2004

Bibliographical note

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  • Control
  • Psychological ownership
  • Work environment structure


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