Measuring psychological ownership: A critical review

Chantal Olckers*, Llewellyn van Zyl

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In the fields of psychology and management, psychological ownership has been identified as an important positive psychological predictor of workplace motives, attitudes and behaviours. Given its importance, the highly respected authors Avey, Avolio, Crossley, and Luthans (J Organ Behav 30:173-191, 2009) have posited that the development of psychological ownership within organisational contexts should be a strategic priority and that psychological ownership should be effectively measured, developed and managed. However, its effective measurement is still a challenge. Although various instruments exist to measure psychological ownership, their factor structures, item loadings and reliability differ in respect of different populations. Thus, two questions arise: Are these measures valid, reliable and complete? Why do these measures produce inconsistent results across samples? To explore possible answers to these questions a critical review of the existing measures is necessary. Therefore, this chapter aims to critically review the main measures of psychological ownership.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTheoretical Orientations and Practical Applications of Psychological Ownership
EditorsChantal Olckers, Llewellyn van Zyl, Leoni van der Vaart
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9783319702476
ISBN (Print)9783319702469
Publication statusPublished - 27 Nov 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Belongingness
  • Self-efficacy
  • Self-identity
  • Territoriality psychological ownership


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