Rafael Wittek

Rafael Wittek
University of Groningen | RUG · Department of Sociology

Dr.

About

110
Publications
130,223
Reads
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1,967
Citations
Additional affiliations
March 2001 - present
University of Groningen
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (110)
Article
Full-text available
Gossip is a pervasive phenomenon in organizations causing many individuals to have second-hand information about their colleagues. However, whether it is used to inform friendship choices (i.e., friendship creation, friendship maintenance, friendship discontinuation) is not that evident. This paper articulates and empirically tests a complex contag...
Conference Paper
Complex contagion theory is used to develop novel hypotheses on the effects of workplace gossip on expressive relations. It is argued that hearing gossip from multiple senders or about multiple targets impacts receivers’ friendships with gossip targets. Hypotheses are tested in a two-wave sociometric panel study among 148 employees of three units i...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The decentralization of the Indonesian healthcare system, launched in the year 2000, allowed the authorities of local community health centers (CHCs) to tailor their services to the needs of their clients. Many observers see this as an opportunity to increase CHC efficiency. Building on the Context Design Performance Framework, this pa...
Chapter
Full-text available
Reputation effects are crucial for social life. There has been important work done in the social sciences on this topic and Raub's contribution has been widely recognized. It builds on Granovetter's seminal work on embeddedness. However, Raub's contribution is unnecessarily limited by the fact that he copied Granovetter's error by assuming that all...
Article
Full-text available
Providing aid in times of increasing humanitarian needs, limited budgets and security risks is challenging. This paper explores in what organizational circumstances evaluators positively and negatively judge INGOs' performance in natural disasters. We study if and how, as perceived by expert evaluators, Oxfam and CARE successfully met multiple inst...
Article
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This study examines the effects of different types of private Islamic schools on student achievement and achievement gaps. We formulate hypotheses, drawing on an education production function approach that outlines differences in investment and resource allocation decisions across these tracks and streams. We tested our hypotheses using Indonesian...
Article
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Most of the current literature on gossip describes gossipmongers as incessantly sharing evaluative and valuable information about an absent third party in teams, groups, communities, and organizations. However, potential gossipers can similarly decide not to share what they know, depending on the content, the context, or their relationship with the...
Article
Standard anticorruption interventions consist of intensified monitoring and sanctioning. Rooted in principal‐agent theory, these interventions are based on the assumption that corrupt acts follow a rational cost‐benefit calculation by gain‐seeking individuals. Given their mixed results, however, these interventions require closer scrutiny. Building...
Article
Full-text available
In this exploratory study, we present findings from semi-structured interviews with 11 self-identified lesbian and gay (LG) humanitarian aid workers of Doctors without Borders (MSF). We investigate their perceptions of workplace inclusion in terms of perceived satisfaction of their needs for authenticity and belonging within two organizational sett...
Preprint
Two of the most prominent phenomena in the study of social determinants of health, the socio-economic gradient in health and the income inequality–health association, have both been suggested to be explainable by the mechanism of status comparisons. This, however, has rarely ever been tested in a direct fashion. In this article, we explicate and te...
Article
Full-text available
Formal models of status construction theory suggest that beliefs about the relative social worth and competence of members of different social groups can emerge from face-to-face interactions in task-focused groups and eventually become consensual in large populations. We propose two extensions of earlier models. First, we incorporate the microleve...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: To examine the impact of changes in an older person's frailty on the care-related quality of life of their informal caregiver. Methods: Five research projects in the TOPICS-MDS database with data of both older person and informal caregiver at baseline and after 12 months follow-up were selected. Frailty was measured in five health domai...
Article
Full-text available
This paper uses an opportunity structure approach to theorize and empirically study why some children are not going to school in Indonesia. We study a set of municipality and household characteristics that could either hinder or facilitate children to be out of school by means of a dataset consisting of 221,392 children, nested in 136,182 household...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Informal care is taking an increasingly important role in our health care system, and an improvement in our understanding of caregiving experiences and outcomes has become more relevant. The Lifelines informal care add-on study (Lifelines ICAS) was initiated within the Lifelines Cohort Study to cover the large heterogeneity in the careg...
Preprint
Research has established a robust association between subjective socioeconomic status (SES) and health outcomes, which holds over and above the associations between objective markers of SES and health. Furthermore, comparative research on health inequalities has shown considerable variation in the relationship between different objective markers of...
Preprint
Research suggests that doctor–patient relations have evolved from a doctor-centered, paternalistic approach towards a more patient-centered, egalitarian model of interactions between physicians and their patients. Given the long-running debate on the positive relationship between education and health, the question arises how this development in doc...
Article
Full-text available
Background Pressures on informal caregivers are likely to increase due to increasing life expectancy and health care costs, which stresses the importance of prevention of subjective burden. The present study examined the correlates of overall subjective burden and multiple burden dimensions among spousal and adult-child caregivers of Dutch older ad...
Article
While much is known about the pathways linking workplace disclosure of a stigmatised identity and negative wellbeing outcomes, little is known about the pathways to positive wellbeing outcomes. Using survey and interview data three pathways were investigated among the population of individuals with degenerative eye conditions: the alleviation of in...
Article
Research suggests that doctor–patient relations have evolved from a doctor-centered, paternalistic approach towards a more patient-centered, egalitarian model of interactions between physicians and their patients. Given the long-running debate on the positive relationship between education and health, the question arises how this development in doc...
Chapter
Incidents of corruption by local public leaders have increased in Indonesia in the era of a decentralized democratic regime, in which regional governments enjoy greater power and autonomy to manage regional resources. Previous research suggests that the shift of formal power from the central government to regional governments resulted in new actors...
Article
Full-text available
Background Previous studies are inconclusive on whether poor socioeconomic conditions in the neighborhood are associated with major depressive disorder. Furthermore, conceptual models that relate neighborhood conditions to depressive disorder have not been evaluated using empirical data. In this study, we investigated whether neighborhood income is...
Article
Collective action is a community resource crucial to ensure the resilience of communities. However, maintaining cooperation over time is also a significant challenge. Arguing that a major, though neglected, precondition for community resilience is sustained cooperation, this paper analyses the conditions triggering collective action in collective h...
Article
Full-text available
Background Informal caregiving is becoming more relevant with current trends such as population ageing. However, little is known about nonconsent and nonresponse bias in caregiving research. We investigated nonconsent and nonresponse bias in a sample of informal caregivers who participated in the LifeLines Cohort Study, and were invited for partici...
Article
Despite the pivotal role that both power and interpersonal trust play in a multitude of social exchange situations, relatively little is known about their interplay. Moreover, previous theorizing makes competing claims. Do we consider our relatively more powerful exchange partners to be less trustworthy, as rational choice reasoning would suggest?...
Article
A limited body of research has examined satisfaction with work–life balance of expatriate workers who live abroad, residing outside the typical “family” or “life” domain. This study aims to demonstrate how and under which organizational circumstances job autonomy can increase work–life balance satisfaction of humanitarian aid expatriates. We hypoth...
Article
The counterproductive effects of the Law normalization top incomes in the Netherlands On January 1, 2013, the Dutch Parliament passed the so-called Wet normering topinkomens (WNT), a regulation to limit the rising salaris of topmanagers in the (semi)public sector. This article addresses the question whether or not this regulation will succeed in ac...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate three distinct hypotheses about the relationship between human resource (HR) practices (discretion and skill enhancement) and the level of trade openness and foreign direct investments of countries. Design/methodology/approach – The study applies multilevel analysis using data of 16,701 employe...
Chapter
Full-text available
This study contributes to our knowledge on the impact of decentralization of the education sector in Indonesia. We extend existing research by examining the influence of both municipal factors and other explanatory variables on educational attainment in Indonesia. We focus on mean years of schooling as an indicator of educational attainment. We hyp...
Article
Full-text available
Op 1 januari 2013 werd in Nederland de Wet normering topinkomens (WNT) van kracht, met als doel de stijging van inkomens van topbestuurders in (semi-)publieke organisaties te beperken. Dit artikel richt zich op de vraag wat de mogelijke bijkomende effecten van de WNT zullen zijn. Wij stellen dat een gedragstheoretische analyse deze bijkomende effec...
Chapter
Prosocial behavior involves costs for the self and results in benefits for others. Altruistic acts confer benefits to others, but net costs to the self. Different types of prosocial behavior are distinguished, depending on whether it is enacted by an individual or as part of a group effort, and whether it is first order (direct contributions) or se...
Chapter
Full-text available
This study contributes to our knowledge on the impact of decentralization of the education sector in Indonesia. We extend existing research by examining the influence of both municipal factors and other explanatory variables on educational attainment in Indonesia. We focus on mean years of schooling as an indicator of educational attainment. We hyp...
Chapter
Indonesia, over the past two decades, has embarked on a process of decentralization as part of a broader process of democratization, which followed earlier periods of centralized governance and authoritarian rule across the archipelago. The purpose of this book is to explore the connections between governance and sustainable society in a wide varie...
Article
Full-text available
Parliamentary motions are a vital and frequently used element of political control in democratic regimes. Despite their high incidence and potential impact on the political fate of a government and its policies, we know relatively little about the conditions under which parliamentary motions are likely to be accepted or rejected. Current collective...
Article
Full-text available
Economic globalization is often considered to be one of the main causes of recent changes in the workplace and the way in which organizations manage their human resources. Nevertheless, an empirical study putting this claim to the test by relating the internationalization of the economy to the use of human resource practices has not been conducted...
Article
Full-text available
Status beliefs link social distinctions, such as gender and race, to assumptions about competence and social worth. Recent modeling work in status construction theory suggests that interactions in small, task focused groups can lead to the spontaneous emergence and diffusion of such beliefs in larger populations. This earlier work has focused on dy...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Research on aging has consistently demonstrated an increased chance of survival for older adults who are integrated into rich networks of social relationships. Theoretical explanations state that personal networks offer indirect psychosocial and direct physiological pathways. We investigate whether effects on and pathways to mortality r...
Article
A technocratic pathway to public management reform stresses the need for committing sizeable resources to reform implementation. Building on an institutional framework, we argue that there are alternative pathways to compliant implementation for government agencies with limited resources. Our comparative study of 55 Mexican government agencies that...
Article
High employee turnover rates constitute a major challenge to effective aid provision. This study examines how features of humanitarian work and aid workers' individual characteristics affect retention within one humanitarian organisation, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Holland. The study extends existing research by providing new theoretical explan...
Chapter
Full-text available
In the previous chapter we discussed a method to arrive at suitable intervention options. Before one can initiate a project, one more step is necessary: assessing which suitable interventions are also feasible given the stakeholder field. This chapter presents a tool for choosing feasible interventions from a set of suitable options. Humanitarian i...
Article
This study examines how firms’ level of diversification and inter- firm ties affect the risk of failure in a knowledge-based industry. Drawing on organizational knowledge and learning literature we test our hypotheses on 41-year data on failure of US venture capital (VC) firms. We find that there is an inverted J- shaped relationship between the de...
Article
Building enforcement capacity, that is, attaining and sustaining control in order to implement changes, is crucial for the success of public management reforms. However, this aspect of public management reform does not receive much theoretical or empirical attention. This paper analyzes the process of building enforcement capacity for the case of t...
Book
This book presents a new framework of analysis to assess natural and man-made disasters and humanitarian crises, and the feasibility of interventions in these complex emergencies. The past half-century has witnessed a dramatic increase in such crises - such as in Haiti, Iraq and Sudan - and this volume aims to pioneer a theory-based, interdisciplin...
Article
Full-text available
Background The combination of informal care and paid work is becoming increasingly common. Currently, in the Netherlands more than 70% of all informal caregivers aged 65 or younger combines informal care with paid work, and an increase is expected. Findings of research on consequences of this combination for caregiver quality of life are inconclu...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: This study investigates the role of gender, functional limitations, and social interaction in the association between instrumental support from adult children and parental depression. We apply self-determination theory to hypothesize about the role of physical needs and social resources on parental depression in a European context. Me...
Article
Full-text available
Organizations represent deliberately designed social contexts that are characterized by multi-level hierarchies. Interests and opportunity structures at each level usually do not overlap. We suggest that one of the reasons why intentional change efforts often fail to reach their objectives is because they are likely to trigger competing social mech...
Conference Paper
Research on aging has consistently demonstrated increased chance of survival for older adults who are integrated into rich networks of personal relationships. Theoretical explanations are that personal relationships offer direct behavioral and physiological pathways to longevity, as well as buffer stress and provide coping resources during critical...
Article
Full-text available
To date, the gaps between actual and preferred working hours are mostly theorised and analysed at the individual level. This article provides new insights as to what extent different household arrangements relate to matches or mismatches concerning the achievement of a desired time allocation. The concept of household governance refers to regulatio...
Chapter
Full-text available
Intraorganizational networks are the aggregate of the formal and informal relationships between the members of an organization. Depending on the presence or absence of formal and informal elements in the tie between two members of the organization, four elementary types of intraorganizational relationships can be distinguished. Together they form t...
Chapter
Full-text available
A structural hole refers to an “empty space” in the network between two groups of actors that do not otherwise interact closely (though they may be aware of one another). Actors on either side of the structural hole have access to different flows of information. Structural holes therefore reflect “an opportunity to broker the flow of information be...
Article
Full-text available
Proponents of new public management (NPM) expect public organizations to become more flexible and adaptive after administrative reforms, effectively showing convergence with patterns of organizational change in the private sector. This “convergence argument” is tested with a sample of 61 public and 61 private organizations in the Netherlands. We an...
Article
Full-text available
Two of the most prominent phenomena in the study of social determinants of health, the socio-economic gradient in health and the income inequality-health association, have both been suggested to be explainable by the mechanism of status comparisons. This, however, has rarely ever been tested in a direct fashion. In this article, we explicate and te...
Book
The Handbook of Rational Choice Social Research offers the first comprehensive overview of how the rational choice paradigm can inform empirical research within the social sciences. This landmark collection highlights successful empirical applications across a broad array of disciplines, including sociology, political science, economics, history, a...
Chapter
Full-text available
“Rational Choice Theory” is a general theory of action and is considered as one of the three overarching meta-theoretical paradigms in the social sciences, with structural-institutional theories and cultural theories constituting its main competitors. Rational choice theory explains social phenomena as outcomes of individual choices that can—in som...
Chapter
Full-text available
“Rational Choice Theory” is an umbrella term for a variety of models explaining social phenomena as outcomes of individual action that can—in some way—be construed as rational. “Rational behavior” is behavior that is suitable for the realization of specific goals, given the limitations imposed by the situation. The key elements of all rational choi...
Article
This study investigates the co-evolution of friendship and gossip in organizations. Two contradicting perspectives are tested. The social capital perspective predicts that friendship causes gossip between employees, defined as informal evaluative talking about absent colleagues. The evolutionary perspective reverses this causality claiming that gos...
Article
Full-text available
This study developed and tested a relational theory of positive and negative gossip about managers. It is argued that spreading information about managers depends on trust in organizations, more specifically the employees' generalized and interpersonal trust in managers and colleagues. Hypotheses were tested by conducting two studies in a medium-si...
Article
Social status and social capital frameworks are used to derive competing hypotheses about the emergence and structure of advice relations in organizations. Although both approaches build on a social exchange framework, they differ in their behavioral micro-foundations. From a status perspective, advice giving is a means to generate prestige, wherea...
Article
Full-text available
Gossip is informal talking about colleagues. Taking a social network perspective, we argue that group boundaries and social status in the informal workplace network determine who the objects of positive and negative gossip are. Gossip networks were collected among 36 employees in a public child care organization, and analyzed using exponential rand...
Article
We adopt a relational approach to examine the effects of social relations and formal structure on who speaks up to whom about problems at work. Data were collected in a two-wave employee survey in three Dutch preschools. Using exponential random graph modeling, we found significant positive effects of formal structure (recipient's hierarchical leve...
Article
Full-text available
Extending Hirschman’s ‘Exit—Voice—Loyalty’ framework, the authors distinguish between attitudinal and relational aspects of loyalty. They hypothesize that co-workers’ support for voice will moderate the effect of relational, but not attitudinal loyalty on voice. In line with the study’s hypotheses, multilevel analyses of survey data on 204 voice ac...
Article
Full-text available
‘Representative voice’ can be defined as actions in which one or more speakers represent others when speaking up about a problem at the workplace or making a suggestion. The purpose of this paper is to introduce the concept of representative voice, assess the frequency of its occurrence and examine department characteristics associated with its fre...