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Call for papers: Positive psychology interventions in organizations


Call for papers: Positive psychology interventions in organizations

Submission deadline: 1 January 2020

Expanding the focus from preventing what is problematic to capturing the mechanisms that create positive deviance leads to a more complete view of the conditions and processes that contribute to the optimal functioning of people, groups and institutions (Gable & Haidt, 2005). In this special issue, we would like to bring together papers that are inspired by the research streams that aim at producing positive individual and organizational outcomes: positive psychology, positive organizational scholarship, and positive organizational behaviour. Positive psychology refers to the ‘science of positive subjective experience, positive individual traits, and positive institutions’ (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000, p. 5). Positive organizational behaviour can be defined as the ‘study and application of positively oriented human resource strengths and psychological capacities that can be measured, developed, and effectively managed for performance improvement in today’s workplace’ (Luthans, 2002, p. 698). Positive organizational scholarship is ‘the study of that which is positive, flourishing, and life-giving in organizations’ (Cameron & Caza, 2004, p. 731). The aim of the special issue is to strengthen the evidence-based underpinnings of these positive approaches by investigating the impact of positive interventions in organizations. Interventions could be initiated at the organizational level and include Human Resources and leadership interventions; or initiated at the individual level, and include job crafting, strengths use, vitality management, mindfulness and other interventions; or a combination of  both.

We encourage submissions of a wide range of interventions that use varying methodologies to cultivate positive subjective experiences, the building of positive individual traits, or the building of civic virtue and positive institutions. Both more classical positive psychology interventions and more recently developed interventions that are aimed at enhancing well-being and positive job outcomes fall within the scope of this special issue. Non-intervention studies that generate useful information about how positive psychology interventions should be delivered, and critical approaches, dealing with potential downsides of positive interventions are welcomed as well. Potential research questions include: 

  • What organizational policies, practices and interventions are able to stimulate positive experiences, positive behaviours, and the use and development of positive traits?
  • What variables moderate and/or mediate the effectiveness of these positive interventions? 
  • What is the role of positive leadership and appreciative enquiry in achieving organizational change and sustaining positive relationships in organizations?
  • How do organizational environment and stakeholders facilitate or constrain the effectiveness of positive psychology interventions?
  • What is the role of culture in the process of positive psychology interventions in organizations?
  • What are the mechanisms that engage employees in initiatives to increase workplace wellbeing or engagement?

In addition to addressing relevant content for the special issue, submissions should be prepared and submitted in accordance with the journal’s author guidelines: HERE
For enquiries related to this special issue, please contact the Guest Editors: Marianne van Woerkom (Tilburg University,, Arnold B. Bakker (Erasmus University Rotterdam,, and Michael P. Leiter (Deakin University,