The Impact of Work in People's Lives: An Overview of the Boston College Working Project

Primary tabs

David Blustein will review the major findings from a comprehensive qualitative study of working in the U.S., known as the Boston College Working Project. This study sought to identify the lived experience of 61 adults using a purposive sample from a diverse array of settings with a particular focus on the participants’ work lives.

One of the major themes that will be explored is the observation that there are two profoundly disparate experiences of working within the U.S.; some work for survival and struggle to eke out an existence, while others work for self-determination and experience feelings of satisfaction and accomplishment in their work lives.

In addition, this study identified a growing sense of social and psychological erosion in the workplace, which was manifested in a wide array of ways, including increased self- and other blame, as well as a fragmented sense of security.  The presentation will conclude with future research directions and implications for public policy based on the very rich findings from this study.

About the Speaker

David Blustein is a professor in Boston College's Department of Counseling, Developmental, and Education Psychology.

While his research spans many areas—from poverty and oppression to culture and counseling—David Blustein’s study of the roles of work in psychological functioning has transformed counseling and vocational psychology. His expertise also includes unemployment, decent work, precarious work, relationships and work, the future of work, STEM career development for marginalized high school students, and other aspects of the radically changing world of labor.


  • Workflow Status:
  • Created By:
    A. Maureen Rouhi
  • Created:
  • Modified By:
    A. Maureen Rouhi
  • Modified:

Target Audience

    No target audience selected.