Antecedents of psychological contract breach: The role of job demands and resources, and affect

Tim Vantilborgh, Jemima Bidee, Roland Pepermans, Yannick Griep, Joeri Hofmans

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingMeeting abstract (Book)


While it has been shown that psychological contract breach leads to detrimental outcomes for paid employees and volunteers, relatively little is known about factors leading to perceptions of breach. We examine if job demands and resources are potential antecedents of breach perceptions. We argue that perceiving high demands elicits negative affect, while perceiving high resources stimulates positive affect. Positive and negative affect, in turn, influence the likelihood that psychological contract breaches are perceived. We conducted two experience sampling studies to test our hypotheses: the first using daily surveys in a sample of volunteers, the second using weekly surveys in samples of volunteers and paid employees. Our results confirm that job demands and resources are associated with negative and positive affect respectively. Mediation analyses revealed that individuals who experienced high job resources were less likely to report psychological contract breach, because they experienced high levels of positive affect. The mediating role of negative affect was more complex, as it increased the likelihood to perceive psychological contract breach, but only in the short-term. Finally, our results suggest that volunteers and paid employees react similarly to job demands and resources, in terms of affect and psychological contract breach.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAcademy of Management
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Aug 2015
Event75th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management - Vancouver, Canada
Duration: 7 Aug 201511 Aug 2015


Conference75th Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management


  • job demands
  • job resources
  • Psychological contract breach
  • affect


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