The Burnout Paradox: New Approaches from the Field of Positive Psychology

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



The author can be reached at helen.kaye[at]yahoo.com.


Burnout first emerged as a subject of research in the United States over forty years ago, but the incidence of burnout worldwide has increased substantially over recent years. Today, burnout is recognized globally as a major concern. Despite the recognition of burnout as a complex challenge to workers’ health and productivity, understanding of burnout remains limited. Moreover, despite increasing globalization, and the realities of the multi-cultural workplace, there are very few cross-cultural studies on burnout and positive psychology research on burnout to date has focused on individual, rather than organizational, solutions. This paper’s intent is to begin filling this void by analyzing the different predictive factors and paradoxes of burnout from the cross-cultural perspective of France and the United States- two major world economies with distinctly different labor markets- to illustrate the complexity, paradoxes and misunderstandings surrounding burnout. Based on a review of research on the predictive factors of burnout, as applied to the American and French workplaces, a framework of suggested features is presented for creating sustainable and healthy workplaces by applying models and theories from the field of positive psychology. A call is made for further research on the design of workplaces based on these elements.


burnout, well-being at work, business/work, positive organizational scholarship, positive psychology


Business/Work, Well-being/Flourishing


Literature Review

This document is currently not available here.



Date Posted: 03 December 2018