Research Topic

The Future of Work in Non-Profit and Religious Organizations: Current and Future Perspectives and Concerns

About this Research Topic

Today, non-profit and religious organizations are key players in some major sectors such as health, education and the social sector, in order to maintain the welfare state. Non-profit organizations have worked effectively in the past, thanks to the identification displayed by some of their members: partners, donors, volunteers or members of religious associations, among others.

Recent studies have shown however an emerging failure in the Psychological contract and in the business’ humanization. This work activity is indeed extremely demanding from an emotional point of view, to this we must add workers’ low salaries, the instability of the job position and the extenuating work time. All together, well-being is negatively affected and the turnover rate in this sector is rapidly increasing.

The decreased admission of members in religious organizations together with the reduced capacity of the non-profit organizations to attract and maintain the employees might jeopardize the long-term survival of these entities. Despite this risk, there is a marked resistance to change in the sector that embodies, among other things, an aversion to anything that involves the incorporation of criteria concerning professional management.

Indeed, it is believed that professionalism would create a change of style exclusively focused on increasing the productivity, leading, in worst cases, employees to question the principles motivating them to work in a non-profit or religious organization.

The challenge in this situation is for professionalization to be respectful towards the mission and charisma and to present an opportunity for the employees’ personal growth.

Furthermore, technological and digital improvements are expected, due to the contemporary deployment of machines, robots, digital connectivity, artificial intelligence in the workplace. Non-profit and religious organizations may suffer from the technological development, the risk is to decrease the human side and orientation characterizing these organizations.

Are these organizations ready and able to change?

The highlighted issues are even more significant in the current society in which, nature and meaning of work are undergoing deep changes.

In this context, the increasing rate of non-standard forms of employment has replaced the traditional productive organization, based on full-time and permanent employment, with a system based on flexible under-employment, plural and decentralized work causing instability, non- protection and vulnerability of the employee.

For example, these concerns are presented by the International Labour Organization’s Future of Work Initiative, that calls for an in-depth examination of the future of work with the aim of providing decent and sustainable work opportunities for everyone. To promote a sustainable and decent future of work and work conditions, it is essential to focus on research to promote higher levels of work and society, decent jobs for employees, work organization and work production, and finally an organized governance of work.

This Research Topic is focused on the future of work in non-profit and religious organizations. We welcome manuscripts focusing on, but not limited to, to the following themes:

- Diversity management
- Workers' values and job involvement
- Authenticity at work
- Decent work
- Precarious employment
- Sustainable and healthy work environment
- Volunteer commitment
- Implication of Laity
- Servant leadership
- Work-related stress
- Well-being at work
- Workplace bullying and violence in the workplace
- Disability and mental health
- New forms of employment
- Contingent work
- Labour flexibility
- Psychosocial risk and protective factors at work
- Work-life balance
- Job satisfaction
- Work engagement
- Business Ethics
- Moral disengagement
- Corruption
- Humanistic organizations
- Future work skills
- Organizations’ change capacity


Keywords: Non-profit and Religious Organizations, Future of Work, Well-being at work, Sustainability, Decent Work


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Today, non-profit and religious organizations are key players in some major sectors such as health, education and the social sector, in order to maintain the welfare state. Non-profit organizations have worked effectively in the past, thanks to the identification displayed by some of their members: partners, donors, volunteers or members of religious associations, among others.

Recent studies have shown however an emerging failure in the Psychological contract and in the business’ humanization. This work activity is indeed extremely demanding from an emotional point of view, to this we must add workers’ low salaries, the instability of the job position and the extenuating work time. All together, well-being is negatively affected and the turnover rate in this sector is rapidly increasing.

The decreased admission of members in religious organizations together with the reduced capacity of the non-profit organizations to attract and maintain the employees might jeopardize the long-term survival of these entities. Despite this risk, there is a marked resistance to change in the sector that embodies, among other things, an aversion to anything that involves the incorporation of criteria concerning professional management.

Indeed, it is believed that professionalism would create a change of style exclusively focused on increasing the productivity, leading, in worst cases, employees to question the principles motivating them to work in a non-profit or religious organization.

The challenge in this situation is for professionalization to be respectful towards the mission and charisma and to present an opportunity for the employees’ personal growth.

Furthermore, technological and digital improvements are expected, due to the contemporary deployment of machines, robots, digital connectivity, artificial intelligence in the workplace. Non-profit and religious organizations may suffer from the technological development, the risk is to decrease the human side and orientation characterizing these organizations.

Are these organizations ready and able to change?

The highlighted issues are even more significant in the current society in which, nature and meaning of work are undergoing deep changes.

In this context, the increasing rate of non-standard forms of employment has replaced the traditional productive organization, based on full-time and permanent employment, with a system based on flexible under-employment, plural and decentralized work causing instability, non- protection and vulnerability of the employee.

For example, these concerns are presented by the International Labour Organization’s Future of Work Initiative, that calls for an in-depth examination of the future of work with the aim of providing decent and sustainable work opportunities for everyone. To promote a sustainable and decent future of work and work conditions, it is essential to focus on research to promote higher levels of work and society, decent jobs for employees, work organization and work production, and finally an organized governance of work.

This Research Topic is focused on the future of work in non-profit and religious organizations. We welcome manuscripts focusing on, but not limited to, to the following themes:

- Diversity management
- Workers' values and job involvement
- Authenticity at work
- Decent work
- Precarious employment
- Sustainable and healthy work environment
- Volunteer commitment
- Implication of Laity
- Servant leadership
- Work-related stress
- Well-being at work
- Workplace bullying and violence in the workplace
- Disability and mental health
- New forms of employment
- Contingent work
- Labour flexibility
- Psychosocial risk and protective factors at work
- Work-life balance
- Job satisfaction
- Work engagement
- Business Ethics
- Moral disengagement
- Corruption
- Humanistic organizations
- Future work skills
- Organizations’ change capacity


Keywords: Non-profit and Religious Organizations, Future of Work, Well-being at work, Sustainability, Decent Work


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

01 June 2019 Abstract
01 October 2019 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

01 June 2019 Abstract
01 October 2019 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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