Coping with dirty work: A meta-synthesis from a resource perspective

Prakriti Soral (Lead / Corresponding author), Surya Prakash Pati, Sanjay Kumar Singh, Fang Lee Cooke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


There is now a substantial body of literature on the coping strategies used by workers employed in stigmatized dirty work. However, there is insufficient knowledge about what resources they use while employing these strategies, what factors impact resource availability and utilization for coping, and how the utilization of resources leads to differential coping. Our study fills these gaps. First, using meta-synthesis of 39 qualitative studies, we consolidate the resources these workers use to cope into six categories. Second, the study discusses what factors impact resource availability and utilization by proposing the role of occupational prestige as a determining factor. Third, borrowing from conservation of resources theory and self-affirmation theory, this study proposes resources as facilitators of self-affirmations leading to differential coping. Finally, we propose a conceptual framework along with propositions depicting how dissonance, caused by inconsistency in self-integrity, leads to the use of various resources for differential coping.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100861
Number of pages21
JournalHuman Resource Management Review
Issue number4
Early online date24 Sept 2021
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Conservation of resources theory
  • Coping resources
  • Dirty work
  • Occupational prestige
  • Self-affirmation theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


Dive into the research topics of 'Coping with dirty work: A meta-synthesis from a resource perspective'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this