Technological and social evolutions put pressure on organizations and their employees and cause work-related problems, such as burn-out. This context challenges us to study the role of demotion. The dissertation starts from the question: “what could the contribution of demotion be to the organization and does the employer perceive demotion as an obstacle or as an opportunity”?


In order to answer these questions, this dissertation studies the demotion concept, analyzes the motives for (not) applying demotion and examines how often demotion occurs in Belgium. A self-designed survey and follow-up focus group interviews provide insights into the dimensions Belgian HR professionals associate with demotion and how they motivate the (non) practice of demotion. Finally, a study based on longitudinal data from EU-SILC 2007-2011 (Statistics on Income and Living Conditions) provides insight into how often job level demotions, authority demotions and salary demotions occur in Belgium.

Verheyen, T., Deschacht, N., & Guerry, M. A. (2016).
The occurrence of demotions regarding job
level, salary and job authority”.
Personnel Review, 45(6), 1217-1239.


Verheyen, T. & Guerry, M.A. (2018).
Motives for (non) practicing demotion“,
Employee Relations, 40 (2), 244-263.