Academic Mobbing in Turkey and Suggestions for Solutions: Content Analysis of Graduate Theses

Erdemir B.

YUKSEKOGRETIM DERGISI, vol.9, no.2, pp.213-233, 2019 (ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 9 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.2399/yod.18.034
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.213-233
  • Keywords: Academics, higher education, mobbing in academia, psychological abuse at workplace, review, WORK
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The effects of globalization on various sectors around the world are reflected in academia through competition, diminishing job security and faculty collegiality, and changing managerial understanding which causes academics to feel pressured to maintain the balance between teaching and research. This transformation inevitably has made the concepts explained by Foucault as "the power exerciser" and "the subject of power" more apparent, as demonstrated by conflicts and mobbing cases. The aim of this study is to review all the master's theses and doctoral dissertations written in Turkey to pin down what has been done until now on mobbing and to form a reference point. Upon searching for certain key words on the website of Council of Higher Education Thesis Center in June 2017, 655 theses on mobbing in various sectors with diverse participant groups were detected. After examining these theses in terms of their participants, it was found out that 29 of them, written between 2005 and 2017, addressed the issue of mobbing among academics. Of these, 26 theses, written between 2006 and 2016, were included in the study. The findings of these theses indicate that while there is 4-100% mobbing in the state and the foundation universities, younger people, singles, and women are more vulnerable to mobbing regarding self-expression, social relations, and communication, and they prefer to remain silent in the face of this issue. Besides, there is a negative relationship between mobbing and seniority, title, organisational justice, trust, commitment, and job-satisfaction. The primary causes of mobbing in academia are nepotism, poor leadership, unhealthy organisational culture, solidarity, andlack of communication. This study is expected to contribute to the formation of a conceptual framework about academic mobbing for the future studies and to expediting the process of taking measures for the eradication of the problem.