Family Firms’ Religious Identity and Strategic Renewal

Sondos G. Abdelgawad, Shaker A. Zahra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


We examine the role of religious identity in promoting strategic renewal in privately held founder family firms. Religious identity in these firms refers to their collective sense of being that reflects their founders’ and owner family members’ espoused religious values and beliefs, thereby distinguishing themselves from others in what is central, distinct, and enduring about their organization. We propose that such a religious identity determines family firms’ spiritual capital, which influences strategic renewal activities such as conflict resolution and resource allocation. Specifically, we argue that spiritual capital can be a double-edged sword when family firms pursue strategic renewal. We discuss the implications of our work for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)775-787
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Business Ethics
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1 2020


  • Organizational identity theory
  • Privately held founder family firms
  • Religious identity
  • Spiritual capital
  • Strategic renewal

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