Workplace Spirituality Research: Issues in the Past Research, Directions for Future Research, and New Advancements



Workplace spirituality refers to employee experiences of spirituality in the workplace.  Employees, as human beings, have a need for spirituality or transcendence.  However, with the primacy of material orientation in organizations, fulfilling employees’ spiritual need in material organizations is both important and challenging.  

Scientific research in workplace spirituality has responded to this challenge and there has been an “explosion of interest”  in the scientific study of workplace spirituality (Parameshwar, 2005, p. 690) possibly because the scientific study of workplace spirituality “may bring forth a new development in the organizational science” (Giacalone and Jurkiewicz, 2003, p. 22).  Thus, considerable volume of research on workplace spirituality has evolved.  The large volume of this research is reflected in the inclusion of “about 140 articles on workplace spirituality” in a review by Karakas  (2010, p. 89) and identification of a total of 882 pieces of published works including books and book chapters in a more recent literature search in Vasconcelos (2018, p. 791).  However, certain limitations are associated with the past workplace spirituality research such as conceptualization of workplace spirituality in “near infinite ways” (Long and Helms Mills 2010, p. 326), proliferation of several scales, and  “shortage of experimental studies” (Vasconcelos, 2018, p. 810 ).   

Considering the importance of and challenge in facilitating workplace spirituality in material organizations, emergence of a large volume of past research, and presence of certain limitations in the past research, this special issue’s objective is to do evaluation of the past research, to identify directions for improving future research, and to make new contributions for advancing workplace spirituality research.  

With this objective, this special issue invites submissions on various workplace spirituality topics covering the themes including, but not limited to, the following.

  • Review of  the past and directions for the future workplace spirituality research
  • Challenges in fulfilling employees’ spiritual needs in organizations with the primacy of a material orientation
  • Innovative and efficacious approaches to facilitating workplace spirituality in organizations 
  • Conceptual works and empirical studies which seek to advance workplace spirituality research

Submissions including, but not limited to, qualitative literature reviews, quantitative literature reviews, conceptual papers proposing new concepts, theories, and perspectives, and empirical studies providing new empirical evidence are invited.  Submissions will be reviewed using the journal’s double-blind review process.

List of topic areas

  • Qualitative Review of Past Workplace Spirituality Research
  • Quantitative Review of Past Workplace Spirituality Research
  • Challenges in fulfilling employees' spiritual needs in organizations 
  • Innovative and efficacious approaches to facilitating workplace spirituality 
  • Conceptual papers which propose new workplace spirituality concepts, theories, and perspectives 
  • Empirical studies which provide new evidence on workplace spirituality 
  • Any other themes or research works which can directly advance workplace spirituality research

Guest Editor

Badrinarayan Shankar Pawar,
Professor at Indian Institute of Management Raipur, India. Email:
[email protected], [email protected]

Submissions Information:

Submissions are made using ScholarOne Manuscripts. Registration and access are available at:

Author guidelines must be strictly followed. Please see:

Authors should select (from the drop-down menu) the special issue title at the appropriate step in the submission process, i.e. in response to ““Please select the issue you are submitting to”. 

Submitted articles must not have been previously published, nor should they be under consideration for publication anywhere else, while under review for this journal.

Key deadlines:

Closing date for manuscripts submission: 30/06/2023


Giacalone, R. A. and Jurkiewicz, C. L.  (2003), “Toward a science of workplace spirituality”,  in Giacalone, R. A. and Jurkiewicz, C. L. (Eds.), The Handbook of Workplace Spirituality and Organizational Performance, ME, Sharpe, Armonk, NY, pp. 3-28.
Karakas, F. (2010), “Spirituality and performance in organizations:  A literature review”, Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 94 No. 1, pp. 89-106.
Long, B. S. and Helms Mills, J. (2010), “Workplace spirituality, contested meaning, and the culture of organization:  A critical sensemaking account”, Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 23 No. 3,  pp. 325-341.  
Parameshwar, S.  (2005), “Spiritual leadership through ego-transcendence:  Exceptional responses to challenging circumstances”, Leadership Quarterly, Vol. 16, 689-722.
Vasconcelos, A. F. (2018), “Workplace spirituality:  Empirical evidence revisited”, Management Research Review, Vol. 41 No. 7., pp. 789-821.