The microfoundations of physicians’ managerial attitude

Fausto Di Vincenzo, Daria Angelozzi, Federica Morandi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background Accountable care has profoundly changed the organizational models adopted by health care organizations and, consequently, the skill set required for doctor-managers who have become middle managers and must deal with the operational management of their units. The aim of this study was to identify the psychological microfoundations (i.e., traits) of physicians’ managerial attitude. Specifically, we analysed the roles played by narcissism, specialization choices and identification with the organization. Methods We collected primary data on a population of ward unit heads in the Italian National Health Service. A logistic regression model predicting the levels of managerial attitude was employed. Results The results indicate that high levels of narcissism and identification with the organization are related to higher managerial attitude (instead of clinical attitude). Additionally, we found that physicians with a technique-oriented specialization present a higher probability of manifesting managerial attitude (in comparison to clinical attitude). Conclusions Hospital managers can benefit from the use of these findings by developing a strategic approach to human resource management that allows them to identify, train and select the right mix of technical knowledge and managerial skills for middle-management roles.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalBMC Health Services Research
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • managerial attitude
  • microfoundations
  • physicians


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