Subjective Nearness-To-Death and Retirement Anxiety Among Older Workers: A Three-Way Interaction With Work Group Identification

Ariane Froidevaux, Yoav S. Bergman, Dikla Segel-Karpas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Retirement anxiety represents a major challenge for older workers who hold negative expectations and concerns regarding the consequences of their future retirement. Although prior studies suggest that retirement is an age-related transition that may serve as a reminder that life is nearing its end, little is known about how subjective nearness-to-death is related to retirement anxiety, and the role of work group identification as a boundary condition. The current study draws on terror management and social identity theories to hypothesize and investigate these relationships. A three-way interaction model was tested on a sample of 327 Israeli older workers. We found a positive association between subjective nearness-to-death and retirement anxiety. Further, we demonstrated that the positive relationship between subjective nearness-to-death and retirement anxiety was more prominent for older workers whose work group self-definition and self-investment were both high or were both low. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalResearch on Aging
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: The contribution of Dr. Froidevaux was partially supported by a fellowship awarded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (P300P1-174393).

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.


  • older workers
  • retirement anxiety
  • social identity theory
  • subjective nearness-to-death
  • terror management theory
  • work group identification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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