Title

Towards an experience-based Categorisation of Occupation

Location

Hiawatha 1

Start Time

18-10-2014 10:30 AM

End Time

18-10-2014 11:00 AM

Session Type

Theoretical Paper

Abstract

Occupational Science current categorisation of occupation reflects a direction in thinking that addresses societal and political needs rather than how occupation relates to human development, health, and well-being. Categories most often used are work, leisure and self-care. They are general and abstract categories used for example in everyday language and in statistical population studies. How limited they are becomes obvious when considering that a majority of the population in a western society are not working (in the meaning into paid work). By definion they will then only do leisure and self-care. Occupational science need to move in new directions to develop conceptualisations about occupation that matter for people.

In this presentation, an alternative way to conceptualise and categorise occupation will be proposed that are based on the actual experiences of people (Jonsson, 2008). Drawing from a longitudinal study of working people who went into retirement (Jonsson, 2011) a new empirically-based typology of occupation will be suggested. Using this new typology, it will be argued that some occupations are more important than others and that they contribute to well-being to a greater degree than others. Other suggestions that move toward an experience based categorisation will also be discussed; in occupational therapy (Hammel, 2009), in leisure studies (Stebbins, 1997), and in time-use studies (Harvey & Pentland, 2003).

Keywords: Categorisation, Typologies, Engaging occupation

References

Hammel K., W. (2009). Self-care, productivity, and leisure, or dimensions of occupational experience? Rethinking occupational "categories". Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 76 (2), 107-14.

Harvey, A. S., & Pentland, W. (2003). What do people do? In C. Christiansen & E. Townsend (Eds.), Introduction to occupation: The art and science of living (pp. 63-90). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Jonsson, H. (2011). The first steps into the third age: The retirement process from a Swedish perspective. Occupational Therapy International, 18, 32-38.

Jonsson, H. (2008). A New Direction in the Conceptualization and Categorization of Occupation. Journal of Occupational Science, 15 (1), 3-8.

Stebbins, R. A. (1997). Serious leisure and well-being. In J. T. Haworth (Ed.), Work, leisure and well-being (pp. 117-130). New York: Routledge.

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Oct 18th, 10:30 AM Oct 18th, 11:00 AM

Towards an experience-based Categorisation of Occupation

Hiawatha 1

Occupational Science current categorisation of occupation reflects a direction in thinking that addresses societal and political needs rather than how occupation relates to human development, health, and well-being. Categories most often used are work, leisure and self-care. They are general and abstract categories used for example in everyday language and in statistical population studies. How limited they are becomes obvious when considering that a majority of the population in a western society are not working (in the meaning into paid work). By definion they will then only do leisure and self-care. Occupational science need to move in new directions to develop conceptualisations about occupation that matter for people.

In this presentation, an alternative way to conceptualise and categorise occupation will be proposed that are based on the actual experiences of people (Jonsson, 2008). Drawing from a longitudinal study of working people who went into retirement (Jonsson, 2011) a new empirically-based typology of occupation will be suggested. Using this new typology, it will be argued that some occupations are more important than others and that they contribute to well-being to a greater degree than others. Other suggestions that move toward an experience based categorisation will also be discussed; in occupational therapy (Hammel, 2009), in leisure studies (Stebbins, 1997), and in time-use studies (Harvey & Pentland, 2003).

Keywords: Categorisation, Typologies, Engaging occupation