Global Asia

Globalizing Asian Religions - Management and Marketing

Wendy SmithHirochika NakamakiLouella MatsunagaTamasin Ramsay

This volume brings together the insights of theories of management and marketing to give an original, alternative view of the organizational dynamics of globalizing Asian New Religious Movements (NRMs) and established religions. It also provides insights into the way the traditional religions are fighting back as they lose numbers to NRMs and are forced to adopt innovative proselytizing strategies and a new global mindset. In order to develop this path-breaking theoretical perspective on globalizing Asian religions, eleven authors in this collection have recast their original empirical data on individual Asian religions to focus on the way these organizations are managed in an overseas or global context, by examining the structure, organizational culture, management style, leadership principles and marketing strategies of the religious movements they had hitherto studied from the perspective of the sociology of religion, or religious studies. Others have adopted a national, regional or global focus in relation to the transnational reach of specifically Japanese religions in North and South America, the EU and Africa. The book examines strategies for global proselytization in a variety of local ethnographic contexts, and thus contributes to the scholarly work on the "glocalisation" of religions.


Wendy Smith

Dr Wendy Smith, Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Department of Management, Monash University, is an anthropologist specializing in Japanese and Malaysian Studies, Asian New Religious Movements, Japanese management, managing diversity and social protection. She co-edited Transnational Agency and Migration (2015) with Stefan Koengeter.

Hirochika Nakamaki

Dr Hirochika Nakamaki, Director, Suita City Museum, Professor Emeritus, National Museum of Ethnology, Japan is an anthropologist of Japanese religions, Japanese management and calendar studies. Recent co-edited publications include Business and Anthropology (2013) and Enterprise as an Instrument of Civilization (2015).

Louella Matsunaga

Dr Louella Matsunaga, Senior Lecturer in the Anthropology of Japan, Oxford Brookes University, researches gender in Japanese companies; branding; and Japanese religions outside Japan. Her chapter "The Corporate Brand: towards an anthropology of branding" appears in Nakamaki et al. (eds.) (2015).

Tamasin Ramsay

Tamasin Ramsay PhD, is a scholar and applied anthropologist with a special expertise in the Brahma Kumaris. From 2010-2015 she was NGO Representative to the United Nations (New York) for the Brahma Kumaris and is a special advisor to the Brahma Kumaris Environment Initiative. Ramsay has undertaken significant historical and anthropological research within the Brahma Kumaris, which can be seen at Her most recent publication (forthcoming) is 'Brahma Kumaris', commissioned for the Oxford Bibliographies in Hinduism.