An integrative review of employee voice: identifying a common conceptualization and research agenda

Paula K Mowbray, Adrian Wilkinson, Herman H M Tse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

181 Citations (Scopus)


Employee voice has been studied across a diverse range of disciplines, generating an extensive body of literature on the topic. However, its conceptualization across the disciplines has differed, resulting in a lack of integrative theories and frameworks on employee voice. The main objective of this paper is to conduct a multidisciplinary review of the academic research on employee voice, to show where there is an opportunity to adopt and adapt the findings and research on employee voice within alternate disciplines, and to demonstrate how this may lead to more common ground in the conceptualization of employee voice. This review focuses on an analysis of the Human Resource Management/Employment Relations and Organizational Behaviour disciplines' conceptualization of employee voice, beginning with the identification of where the disciplines diverged in their concept and study of employee voice. Further, it maps their similarities and differences, on the basis of motive, content, mechanism, target and management of voice. Finally, it identifies opportunities to incorporate the alternate disciplinary perspective and proposes a conceptual model, which addresses the blind spots in each discipline. It is proposed that the consideration of formal and informal employee voice in future studies will enable the better integration of voice research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)382-400
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Management Reviews
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes

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