Protective and Risk Factors in Career Development and Possible Interventions in the School Context


  • Iva Šverko Institut društvenih znanosti Ivo Pilar, Zagreb
  • Toni Babarović Institut društvenih znanosti Ivo Pilar, Zagreb


career development, protective and risk factors, career counselling, adolescence


This paper gives a review and new systematization of protective and risk factors that influence an individual's career development. According to the proposed conceptualization, protective and risk factors in career arise from personal, relational, and situational domains. Personal factors are psychological traits that have been evidenced in the literature to influence career development, such as extraversion, conscientiousness, future orientation, optimism, flexibility, stress resilience, selfefficacy, cognitive capacity, or the health of an individual. Relational factors include social influences that can have either positive or negative effect on career development, starting with the influence of parents, peers, and society, and manifest through social support and different relational styles. Situational factors represent different external influences that can influence career development, of which the socio-economic status and opportunities in the individual's place of residence are clearly recognized in the literature. The paper elaborates on the effects that protective and risk factors have on career development. Also, the paper points to available tools for career counselling of adolescents that can mitigate the undesirable effects of risk factors.