Violence and Harassment in the Workplace: Umbrella Reviews




Kim, Bitna

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Institute for Homeland Security


This technical report presents the findings of a grant-funded project, dedicated to exploring the complex issue of workplace violence and mistreatment. Its ultimate aim is to augment the global understanding of this subject and yield actionable insights applicable to a diverse range of organizations, businesses, and corporations across various sectors. Specifically, this project was conducted in two distinct yet interconnected phases. Utilizing an exhaustive, cross-disciplinary literature search, the project's first phase located five existing umbrella reviews on various forms of workplace violence and harassment. The in-depth analysis of these reviews facilitated a comprehensive understanding of the domain by aggregating insights from an array of synthesis research studies. This methodology underscored the most salient and recurrent findings across multiple studies, encompassing areas such as prevalence, risk determinants, mediating and moderating factors, repercussions, and intervention strategies. Detailed discussions of each topic were presented, providing a comprehensive overview of current knowledge and its implications. The project's second phase involved an umbrella review of nine synthesis research studies focusing on interventions for workplace mistreatment. This part aimed 2 to provide empirically supported recommendations for strategies and interventions to prevent and mitigate workplace mistreatment. The findings revealed the prevalence of workplace mistreatment and identified that certain interventions are more effective than others. Due to the multifaceted and complex nature of workplace mistreatment, it was suggested that multi-level, multi-target, and multi-component interventions be implemented. Furthermore, the research underscored the significance of leadership commitment in the successful implementation of interventions and the transformation of organizational culture. In conclusion, this project contributes to a comprehensive understanding of workplace mistreatment and its prevention, providing invaluable insights for practitioners. By informing strategy and intervention design with empirical evidence, this project aimed to equip organizations with the necessary tools to combat this pressing issue effectively.



Workplace violence; workplace harassment; intervention strategies; organizational culture; leadership commitment; umbrella reviews; synthesis research; research-practitioner partnership; translational criminology


Kim, B. (2023) Violence and Harassment in the Workplace: Umbrella Reviews. (Report No. IHS/CR-2023-1030). The Sam Houston State University Institute for Homeland Security.