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The Productivity Consequences of Two Ergonomic Interventions


  • Kelly DeRango

    (W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research)

  • Ben Amick, III

    (The University of Texas Health Sciences Center)

  • Michelle Robertson

    (Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety)

  • Ted Rooney

    (Health and Work Outcomes)

  • Anne Moore

    (School of Kinesiology and Health Science)

  • Lianna Bazzani

    (Health and Work Outcomes)


Pre- and post-intervention data on health outcomes, absenteeism, and productivity from a longitudinal, quasi-experimental design field study of office workers was used to evaluate the economic consequences of two ergonomic interventions. Researchers assigned individuals in the study to three groups: a group that received an ergonomically designed chair and office ergonomics training; a group that received office ergonomics training only; and a control group. The results show that while training alone has neither a statistically significant effect on health nor productivity, the chair-with-training intervention substantially reduced pain and improved productivity. Neither intervention affected sick leave hours.

Suggested Citation

  • Kelly DeRango & Ben Amick, III & Michelle Robertson & Ted Rooney & Anne Moore & Lianna Bazzani, 2003. "The Productivity Consequences of Two Ergonomic Interventions," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 03-95, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:upj:weupjo:03-95

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Currie, Janet & Madrian, Brigitte C., 1999. "Health, health insurance and the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 50, pages 3309-3416 Elsevier.
    2. Emile Tompa, 2002. "The Impact of Health on Productivity: Macro and Microeconomic Evidence and Policy Implications," The Review of Economic Performance and Social Progress,in: Andrew Sharpe, Executive Director & France St-Hilaire, Vice-President , Research & Keith Banting, Di (ed.), The Review of Economic Performance and Social Progress 2002: Towards a Social Understanding of Productivity, volume 2 Centre for the Study of Living Standards;The Institutute for Research on Public Policy.
    3. Ernst R.Berndt, 2000. "On the economic impacts of medical treatments: work productivity and functioning," Estudios de Economia, University of Chile, Department of Economics, vol. 27(2 Year 20), pages 181-198, December.
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    More about this item


    ergonomics; chair; pain; DeRango; Upjohn;

    JEL classification:

    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • J0 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General
    • J8 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards
    • M5 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics

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