Nonviolence Behaviour in the Workplace: Myth or Reality?

  • Ayatakshee Sarkar
  • Sasmita Palo
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Indian Management book series (PAIM)


Ahimsa or nonviolence is a construct derived from Indian wisdom traditions normally associated with Gandhi’s ‘political weapon’ to free India from the colonial supremacy. Though the construct has nuances of politics, its roots are firmly established in philosophical and psychological dimensions. It is a construct we buried long past our independence, therefore inculcating it in our lives may not only seem phantasmagorical, forget associating it with the workplace, which is presumed to be economy-centric. In the past and even today, organisations have tried to look at conflict management, resolution and dealing with aggressive behaviours, looking only at the tip of the iceberg, but nonviolence interventions are not only preventive but also cost beneficial to the companies. The other need to study nonviolence behaviour is that it emphasises upon positive human values. It is believed that the triggers of violence can only be broken by nonviolence interventions, which are a need in today’s organisations and in overall world peace (Bhalerao and Kumar, Nonviolence at Workplace: Scale Development and Validation. Business Perspectives and Research 3 (1): 36–51, 2015). Rather than focusing on conflict resolution, organisations must strive to identify themselves with nonviolence culture in which the core values of compassion, empathy and forgiveness are embedded (Mayton, Nonviolence and Peace Psychology, 37. New York, NY: Springer, 2009). It is perceived that organisations high on spiritual climate can relate to such outcomes of compassion, empathy and forgiveness, thus predicting nonviolence behaviour at the workplace.


Nonviolence behaviour Ahimsa Spirituality Conflict Workplace Spiritual climate 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ayatakshee Sarkar
    • 1
  • Sasmita Palo
    • 1
  1. 1.Tata Institute of Social SciencesMumbaiIndia

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