Workplace bullying and suicidal behaviour

Workplace bullying can be considered a stressful event, but there is little knowledge about its association with suicidal behavior. The aim of this research project was to investigate whether people who had experienced workplace bullying had a higher risk of suicidal behavior than people who had not been exposed to it.

In several large Danish surveys, more than 98,000 employees had been asked about experiences of workplace bullying. These data were linked to registry data, so that researchers could examine how many of the respondents were recorded with suicidal behavior over the subsequent 10 years from 2004-2014. The findings showed that over 10% of the people who had reported experienced workplace bullying. People who had been exposed to workplace bullying had a 1.6 times higher risk of suicidal behavior when compared to those who had not experienced bullying. The study was one of the few, which have documented this association in data where it could be determined that the bullying had been reported prior to the observed suicidal behavior.

The project has received funding from the Psychiatric Research Foundation, Region of Southern Denmark.

You can find the study here:

DRISP: Annette Erlangsen


  • Paul Maurice Conway, Institut for Psykologi, Københavns Universitet
  • Thomas Clausen, Det Nationale Forskningscenter for Arbejdsmiljø, København
  • Annie Høgh, Institut for Psykologi, Københavns Universitet
  • Elsebeth Stenager, Department of Regional Health Research, University of Southern