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date: 18 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

With organizations under pressure from new business models, technological change, and globalization, the prospects for meaningful work appear uncertain. Despite this, scholarly and practitioner interest in meaningful work continues to grow. This handbook examines the conceptualization, practices, and effects of meaningful work by reflecting diverse perspectives on meaningful work from philosophy, political theory, psychology, sociology, and organization studies. In philosophy, moral considerations related to meaningful work range across human flourishing, autonomy, dignity, alienation, freedom, and organizational ethics. Meanwhile, empirical studies are expanding beyond a positive psychology focus on the individual experience, to ethnographic and constructivist approaches which attend to organizational and institutional factors. Furthermore, scholars are now considering multilevel features such as leadership, voluntary work, families, and corporate social responsibility, as well as political economy and large-scale entities such as cities, national cultures, and broader meaning-systems.

Keywords: meaningful work, political theory, positive psychology, moral philosophy, organizational ethics

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