Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Psychology Industrial & Organizational Psychology

Passion for Work

Theory, Reseach, and Applications

edited by Robert J. Vallerand & Nathalie Houlfort

Oxford University Press
Initial publish date
Jun 2019
Industrial & Organizational Psychology
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Jun 2019
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it


Passion is a pervasive concept in the work domain. Workers aspire to be passionate in the hope of finding meaning and satisfaction from their professional life, while employers dream of passionate employees who will ensure organizational performance. Does passion for work matter? Does passion invariably bring about the anticipated positive outcomes or is there a darker side to passion for work that can also lead to negative outcomes for individuals and organizations? The goal of this book is to address these issues.

This volume reviews major theories of work passion, focusing specifically on the dominant theory: the Dualistic Model of Passion. This theory distinguishes between two types of passion-harmonious and obsessive- and their associated determinants and consequences. This volume provides a comprehensive understanding of passion for work by addressing the origin of the concept and its theoretical issues: how can passion for work be developed, what are the consequences to be expected at the individual and organizational levels, and how can passion for work shed new light on contemporary issues in the workplace. Passion for Work: Theory, Research, and Applications synthesizes a vast body of existing research in the area, provides insights into new and exciting research avenues, and explores how passion for work can be cultivated in work settings in order to fulfill both workers' and employers' hopes for a productive and satisfying work life.

About the authors

Contributor Notes

Robert J. Vallerand is Professor of Social Psychology and Director of the Laboratoire de Recherche sur le Comportement Social at the Universite du Quebec a Montreal where he holds a Canada Research Chair in Motivational Processes and Optimal Functioning. Professor Vallerand has published 8 books and around 350 scientific publications. He has served as President of the Quebec Society for Research in Psychology, the Canadian Psychological Association, and the International Positive Psychology Association. He is a Fellow of over a dozen associations including the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. He has received the Donald O. Hebb Career Award from the Canadian Psychological Association, the William James Award from the APA for his book The Psychology of Passion, the Christopher Peterson Gold Medal Award from the International Positive Psychology Association, and the Sport Science Award from the International Olympic Committee.

Nathalie Houlfort is Professor of Work and Organizational Psychology and Director of the Laboratoire de recherche sur le Comportement Organisationnel at the Universite du Quebec a Montreal (UQAM). Professor Houlfort earned her Ph.D. in social psychology from McGill University, and her expertise lies in motivational processes at work. She has served as Head of the Work and Organizational Psychology Section of the Psychology Department at UQAM. Her research focuses on the role of passion in work-life balance. She has worked with many organizations as a consultant and is still consulting with leaders and workers to help building better workplaces where passion for work can be promoted thereby leading to more positive outcomes for all.

Editorial Reviews

"This comprehensive volume provides the latest scientific research and theory on passion in the workplace. It helps distinguish healthy engagement from overwork, and is filled with practical information and insights not only for motivation scholars, but also for HR professionals and managers alike. Whether harmoniously or obsessively passionate, you won't be able to put it down."

--Richard M. Ryan, Professor, Institute for Positive Psychology and Education, Australian Catholic University

"Although 'passion' is familiar to all of us, until recently our psychological understanding was poor. This changed radically with the introduction of the dualistic model of passion by Vallerand and Houlfort some 15 years ago. This book offers an excellent overview on the theoretical thinking on passion and brings together state-of-the-art research from eminent scholars who applied the dualistic model to I/O psychology. A must-read for anyone who wants to understand human passion at work!"

--Wilmar B. Schaufeli, Full Professor of Work and Organizational Psychology, Utrecht University

"Passion in today's workforce is important and yet, we don't have enough science on it. This book is written by an outstanding group of internationally known scholars who address the main issues on passion, from psychological theory to application, Hence, this book is a 'must read' for scientists and practitioners alike."

--Gary Latham, Secretary of State Professor of Organizational Effectiveness, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto

"The notion of passion is most frequently associated with love and with crime, but passion can make all the difference in a career or workplace. This book breaks new ground by assembling a diverse, international cast of scholars to bring a rich variety of perspectives on how passion (or its absence) relates to work. This book will be an invaluable resource for scholars interested in work and success, in motivation, in creativity and perseverance, and even those who ponder what gets people out of bed in the morning."

--Roy F. Baumeister, Professor, School of Psychology, University of Queensland, and author of Willpower: Understanding the Greatest Human Strength

"In addressing all the issues of this exciting and powerful concept--from theory to application--this definitive compilation is a must read for scientists and practitioners alike."


Other titles by Robert J. Vallerand