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Tackling cyberbullying in the workplace

Dr Christine Sprigg (IWP) with colleagues Dr Carolyn Axtell (IWP) , Dr Iain Coyne (IWHO, Nottingham University) and Sam Farley (incoming IWP GTA PhD Student) have been awarded money from ESRC to organise an event called “Punched from the Screen: The Psychology of Workplace Cyberbullying”. The project builds on the outcomes of Management School Research Stimulation money awarded to the team last year.

Cyberbullying, which uses technology as the media to abuse individuals, is the ‘new kid on the block’ in bullying terms. Cyberbullying is now almost of daily media interest. The event, which will form part of the ESRC Festival of Social Science, later this year will be a participative three hour seminar on cyberbullying in the workplace for 25 business stakeholders. The aim of the event is to discuss this topic with representatives of the business community, to explain what contribution work psychology can make to understanding the phenomena, assessing how it may differ from traditional bullying, and limiting the damage of it to employees. The researchers are also interested in identifying current experiences and practices of dealing with cyberbullying from the participants’ perspectives.

The team’s current research examines cyberbullying from a work psychology perspective, specifically looking at the relationship between cyberbullying and employee wellbeing.  This event is an important forum to showcase the applied nature of work psychologists as social scientists in a relatively new topic area. Current research findings and ideas will be disseminated to participants. However, the researchers are also keen to understand the experiences and viewpoints of the target audience and how this may feed into their future research.


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