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Research into the psychological contract: Two Australian perspectives


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O'Donohue, W and Donohue, R and Grimmer, MR (2007) Research into the psychological contract: Two Australian perspectives. Human Resource Development International, 10 (3). pp. 301-318. ISSN 1367-8868

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Despite their increasing relevance, employees’ psychological contracts have
attracted little research attention in Australia. The present paper presents two studies, which
examined the psychological contracts of specific cohorts of professional employees and those in a
managerial career track. The first study was an in-depth qualitative investigation of research
scientists in an Australian public sector research organisation. They were found to have a strong
professional affiliation and had developed psychological contracts that were best understood by
reference to the ‘ideological currency’ of the scientific community. The second study was a
quantitative examination of 156 MBA students at an Australian university, and how their
psychological contracts could be related to perceptions of the contextual variables of
organisational justice, perceived organisational support and external employability. Organisational
justice and perceived organisational support were found to be related to the nature of the
psychological contracts measured, but perceptions of external employability were not.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Psychological contracts, professional employees, organisational context, organisational justice, perceived organisational support
Journal or Publication Title: Human Resource Development International
Page Range: pp. 301-318
ISSN: 1367-8868
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1080/13678860701515349
Additional Information:

The definitive version is available online at

Date Deposited: 17 Jun 2008 05:09
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:43
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