Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Dr. Roni Reiter-Palmon


Employee burnout represents both a significant financial cost for organizations, and a significant health detriment for society. Scholars estimate that burnout costs the U.S. economy over $125 billion dollars yearly and other researchers attribute over 120,000 worker deaths each year to workplace accidents or medical conditions associated with burnout. The present study explores the role that creativity plays in reducing employee burnout by identifying two highly relevant creativity constructs: creative adaptability and creative process engagement (CPE). A sample of 436 working adults were recruited to respond to two survey batteries separated by a lag of three weeks. The results of a series of parallel mediation models demonstrate that both CPE and creative adaptability partially mediate the relationship between challenge demands and two dimensions of burnout: exhaustion and cynicism. No association was observed between hindrance demands and creativity, and challenge demands failed to predict the reduced professional efficacy dimension of burnout. Additionally, CPE emerged as the stronger antecedent of both exhaustion and cynicism scores. While observed effect sizes were small, the standardized path coefficients between CPE and burnout dimensions were approximately twice as strong as those observed between creative adaptability and burnout. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.


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