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Call for Papers: Religion, Spirituality and Faith in a Secular Business World


Guest Editors:

Prof. Dr. Dorothea Alewell, Chair for Human Resource Management, University of Hamburg,

Dr. Tobias Brügger, Center for Religion, Economy and Politics (ZRWP) & UFSP Digital Religion(s), University of Zürich

Prof. Dr. Birgit Feldbauer-Durstmüller, Institute for Controlling & Consulting, University of Linz

Prof. Dr. Katja Rost, Institute of Sociology & UFSP Digital Religion(s), University of Zürich

Prof. Dr. Peter Wirtz, Professor of Corporate Finance and Governance, University of Jean Moulin (Lyon 3)

Special Issue
In his book “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism”, Weber (1904) wrote that capitalism in Northern Europe evolved when the Protestant (particularly Calvinist) ethic influenced large numbers of people to engage in work in the secular world, developing their own enterprises and engaging in trade and the accumulation of wealth for investment. In other religions, such as Islam or Judaism, we may observe different transformation processes. Nevertheless, religion also played a decisive role in the formation of a modern economic system. In some Western societies, religion overwhelmingly takes place in the private sphere, and in their enterprises, religion does not seem to have any explicit meaning anymore. Nevertheless, religion continues to play a major role in other societies, and even in very secular societies, values, norms, but also business convictions are not completely detached from religious beliefs. Various trends in the modern business world point to this: the involvement of continental European banks in Islam banking, the dispute over the publication of religion-related cartoons in magazines, the debate over the wearing of religious symbols such as the headscarf in the business world, or the integration of religious groups in companies in the context of diversity management discourses.


Our special issue addresses negotiations of the relationship between business and faith, spirituality and religion in the contemporary world considering perspectives from different religions like Christianity, Islam, Judaism and others (Neal, 2013). In the last two decades, research on faith, spirituality and religion at work has developed as a distinct research area (Benefiel, 2007; Benefiel, Fry, & Geigle, 2014; Brügger, 2021; Brügger & Huppenbauer, 2019; Delbecq, 2009; Fotaki, Altman, & Koning, 2020; Gundolf & Filser, 2013; Houghton, Neck, & Krishnakumar, 2016; Lips-Wiersma, Lund Dean, & Fornaciari, 2009; Long & Driscoll, 2015; Miller & Ewest, 2013; Neal, 2013; Oswick, 2009; Tackney, Chappell, & Sato, 2017; Tracey, Phillips, & Lounsbury, 2014), with particular strands focusing on management and leadership (Cunha, Rego, & D'oliveira, 2006; Dyck, 2014; Gümüsay, 2019; Keplinger & Feldbauer-Durstmüller, 2016a; Pio, Kilpatrick, & Pratt, 2021; Steingard, 2005), on human resources management (Alewell & Moll, 2019; Alewell & Rastetter, 2020; Wolf & Feldbauer-Durstmuller, 2018; Wolf & Feldbauer-Durstmüller, 2018), corporate governance (Ehrmann, Rost, & Inauen, 2013; Feldbauer-Durstmüller, Sandberger, & Neulinger, 2019; Gomez & Wirtz, 2018; Inauen, Rost, Frey, Homberg, & Osterloh, 2010; Rost, 2015; Rost & Graetzer, 2014; Rost, Inauen, Osterloh, & Frey, 2010; Wirtz, 2015, 2017), business ethics (Gümüsay, 2019; Gümüsay, 2020; Keplinger & Feldbauer-Durstmüller, 2016b), or entrepreneurship (Balog, Baker, & Walker, 2014; Dodd & Gotsis, 2007; Dougherty, Griebel, Neubert, & Park, 2013; Feldbauer-Durstmüller, Keplinger, & Sandberger, 2014; Gümüsay, 2015; Keplinger, Feldbauer-Durstmüller, Sandberger, & Neulinger, 2016; Sageder, Mitter, & Feldbauer‐Durstmüller, 2018).

Our special issue examines the topic of business and faith, spirituality and religion in the contemporary world from the perspective of various disciplines, such as business administration, theology, sociology, psychology, economics and ethics. Depending on the quality and number of submissions, we plan either a single or a double issue. The following list of topics provides an overview of the direction submissions could take. However, we also explicitly invite different ideas for submission.

Faith, spirituality, religion and management theories

Faith, spirituality, religion and human resource management

Faith, spirituality, religion and corporate governance

Faith, spirituality, religion and entrepreneurship

Faith, spirituality, religion and business ethics

Faith, spirituality, religion and technological change

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Dorothea Alewell
Tobias Brügger
Birgit Feldbauer-Durstmüller
Katja Rost
Peter Wirtz

Full papers for this special issue of management revue – Socio-Economic Studies must be submitted by July 31, 2021. All contributions will be subject to a double-blind review. Papers invited to a “revise and resubmit” are due November 30, 2021. The publication is scheduled for issue 3/2022. Please submit your papers electronically via the online submission system at using “SI Religion, Spirituality and Faith” as article section.


Manuscript length should not exceed 10,000 words (excluding references) and the norm should be 30 pages in double-spaced type with margins of about 3 cm (1 inch) on each side of the page. Further, please follow the guidelines on the journal’s website (

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Fotaki, M., Altman, Y., & Koning, J. 2020. Spirituality, Symbolism and Storytelling in Twentyfirst-Century Organizations: Understanding and addressing the crisis of imagination. Organization Studies, 41(1): 7-30.

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Gomez, P.-Y. & Wirtz, P. 2018. Successfully mobilizing for employee board representation: Lessons to be learned from post-war Germany. Journal of Management History.

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Simon Fietze

Associate Professor

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Editor-in-Chief of management revue – Socio-Economic Studies (listed in ESCI, Scopus, ABS 2018)

Coordinator for the H2020-MSCA-RISE Project Entrepreneurial Management for Fostering Innovation and Talents (EM4FIT)

Programme Responsible for the Bachelor ’Global Business Relationships’ at SDU Sønderborg


Syddansk Universitet/University of Southern Denmark

Institut for Entreprenørskab og Relationsledelse/Department of Entrepreneurship and Relationship Management

Alsion 2 | 6400 Sønderborg | Danmark


Latest publications

Fietze, S., Matiaske, W., & Menges, R. (2019). Corporate responsibility: In the dilemma between fake and trust? Management Revue, 30(2-3), 143-147.


Kim, H. H., & Fietze, S. (2019). Paris Baguette: How a South Korean Bakery Is Entering Europe Through the Capital of France. In C. Prange, & R. Kattenbach (Eds.), Management Practices in Asia: Case Studies on Market Entry, CSR, and Coaching (pp. 115-126). Cham, Switzerland.

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