I. The Social Scientific Study of Leadership: Quo Vadis?

I. The Social Scientific Study of Leadership: Quo Vadis?

Overall great paper. To get even more points I would recommend digging in deeper in your analysis of the articles in D & E by avoiding just mentioning some broad problems or ideas. Instead, provide more specifics and details. See example under Course Questions in eCollege. By elaborating on D & E, you can cut back on your summary responses (A-C). 28.5

I. The Social Scientific Study of Leadership: Quo Vadis?

a. Major Theories/Literature Presented

This article discusses the major theories of leadership, and some of the sub-theories within these categories, including a) traits b) behaviors c) contingency and d) neo-charismatic theory.

Traits theory is based on the premise that leaders have certain unique characteristics which define them as a leader, and thus leaders are naturally born and cannot be taught. This theory is easy to dismiss due to the lack of empirical evidence and consistency to traits. However, this is the nature of any theory in the early 1900s, as appropriate guidelines were not set. In addition, some of the study was skewed from invalid data. When that data is removed, it was found that some traits are representative of effective leadership. Noteworthy sub-theories which fall into the trait theory, and involve nonconscious acts or motives, are: Achievement Motivation Theory and Leader Motive Profile (LMP). Achievement motivation comes from an internal passion for achievement through individual effort. People high in achievement motivation will set challenging goals, and ensure that they are met. As indicated, this is high in individual goals and tight control and active participation of the individual, so it tends to predict effective performance for small groups, but poor performance for executives of large organizations; with limited empirical support. LMP involves motives which theoretically should balance each other out, in order to achieve results which benefit the group. LMP involves: high power motivation, high concern for moral exercise of power, and power motivation being greater than affiliative motivation. Under this theory, one must first want and have the capability to influence others, they must do so in an ethical way and want the correct things for the group, and their desire for power motivation has to be higher than their desire for relationships. The final piece to this is due to the fact that leader visions are not always popular, going against the status quo and proposing change, so they will get pushback from many. In order to achieve the results and produce change, the desire for the end results has to be greater than the need to be liked. Again, limited empirical evidence supports the effectiveness of this theory, and major factor missing from this theory, as well as all other trait theories, is situational variable analysis.

Behavior Theory implies that leadership can be taught through learned behaviors. The major contribution of this theory is task oriented and people oriented. No behaviors were identified which had subordinate satisfaction or effectiveness. What is supported is that task oriented leaders perform best under high and low control and people oriented is best under moderate control. Like trait theory, a major limit of this theory is the omission of situational factors.

Contingency Theory utilizes the essence of behavior theory, while closing the gap on situational effects. A few significant theories derived from contingency theory are Path-Goal Theory, Life Cycle Theory, and Cognitive Resource Theory. Path-Goal Theory deals with paths to achieve goals. However, it is so multifaceted, that it has not be proven, nor believed to have been properly tested. It also deals with the perception of outcomes by the follower, and therefore contains rationality bias. Life Cycle Theory proposes four leadership styles of telling, selling, participating, and delegating; depending on the followers ready and willingness, taking into account situational factors. There is little empirical evidence of this theory. In addition, it is utilized as training for leadership concepts, so it should be tested further to understand the validity of the theory. Cognitive Resource Theory focuses on the effects of situationally induced stress on leaders and followers. This theory entails a balance of resources of intelligence and experience during stressful situations. Intelligence actually interferes with effectiveness under high stress situations. Intelligence negatively correlates to performance under high stress situations. In addition, it also establishes ideal use of participative versus directive styles.

The final main category of leadership theories is Neo-charismatic Theory. All theories under this category provide ideas on how leaders are able to lead and attain outstanding accomplishments. It also provides insights on how certain leaders gain commitment and drive motivation, and defines leader behaviors’ that are emotionally appealing, such as providing a passionate vision. Evidence supporting this theory is mainly with informal leaders of task groups which has shown to have high level of follower motivation and commitment and produces results on performance. However, the measurement system is for this theory is said to be flawed, as it does not include all theoretical behaviors promoted by charismatic leadership. Transformational theory is one of the charismatic theories which appeals to followers emotions through social influence. A major fault seen in this theory is that it is based on Maslow’s theory of motivation which has been disproved through empirical testing.

b. Empirical Evidence Data – N/A

c. Major Conclusions or Point of the Paper

Leadership has been studied and theorized since early 1900s, and has gone through four major studies; traits, behavioral, contingency, and charisma. Throughout this time many leadership theories have been established, but most of them require more study and empirical data to support the actual theory presented. As well, a lot of the earlier studies lacked sufficient resources and knowledge on appropriate methods to collect data. Common themes exist among the different theories, as some build on previous ideas. Different variables and situations, such as stress and subordinate personality, appear to be a major factor in successful leadership styles. As we live in a dynamic environment, with many different personalities, there may not be one style which is effective. The neo-charismatic theory plays on trying to resolve these issues, and does the most integration of theories, in regards to traits / behaviors. However, even theories that fall in this category are not all the way tested. Proper methods, research criteria, control variables, and situations must be performed, and defined, before any one leadership style is determined to be successful and efficient.

d. Major Strengths and Weaknesses of the Paper

The major strengths of the paper are that it provided a good and organized summary of past major theories and limitations of the theory based on present studies. The paper also covered the distinguishing factors between management and leader functions. The weaknesses were that of the scope of information provided, as it was mentioned, the material covered was limited to their own knowledge and judgment. To no fault of the authors, the studies for most of the theories seemed one dimensional. For example, the lack of studies on higher level managers, utilizing lab studies, instead of practice, and lack of women or culture influence.

e. Next Logical Step in Building on the Paper

Many future discussions and studies should be pursued in order to bring clarity to vague or unstudied areas. Some areas which were neglected, and where data should be collected are implications of women in leadership, the cultural effects of leadership due to globalization; individualistic versus collectivist, and leadership styles for a diverse workplace.

In addition, in order to expand on the situational effects, different industries should be studied to identify a common theme.

Up to this point, many ideas have been established for leadership, but it needs to be understood if leadership is too complex, to be characterized in one way. It could require a combination of multiple theories. This can be expressed through valid and reliable studies with meaningful measures identified. The focus in the past has been on lower level management and their relationship and impact on immediate subordinates. However, more studies need to include high level executives and their impact on an organization as a whole to have meaningful data. Within this data would be the executive’s impact on organization culture, behavior, feelings, and performance. Leaders which provide positive performance through their strategies should be observed and leadership qualities attained from the data. Another area to look at is the routinization effects on charismatic leadership. Lastly, a fair analysis of traits and behaviors should be revisited, and to understand if leadership is from genetics, can it be taught through training, mentoring, and experience, or is it a combination of both.

II. Scholarly leadership of the study of leadership: A review of The Leadership Quarterly’s second decade, 2000-2009

a. Major Theories/Literature Presented

This article presented a summary of The Leadership Quarterly (LQ) publications on scholarly leadership study on leadership during 2000 – 2009, and analyzed the quality and material within these articles. LQ did this in response to Lowe & Gardner stating that LQ was the top scholarly journal for leadership research, as in its vision, and that the second decade would eliminate any questions on where to find the best leadership research. This article was presented to see if LQ met their mission and if not, what they could do in order to achieve it, and to present ideas of where leadership studies will focus in the future.

Leadership research has gained in interest over the recent decade, and as such, LQ was started. LQ visits why, and if, this interest in leadership study will continue. LQ also establishes the quality of their publications, through multiple methods.

Citation analysis is done through the impact factor, which is a way to measure the impact a journal has on others through citation analysis. Two methods exist for calculating the impact factor. The Journal Impact Factor (JIF), measures the average citation frequency for a specific citable item in a journal for a specific time. The other method is the Perish software that search Google Scholar; including h-index and g-index as measures.

Content analysis was done by collecting information on who was publishing and what they were publishing. A deep dive into the history of the editors total publications, their discipline focus, and nationality was collected. As well, the type of publication, prominent leadership contributors, and the specific analytical methods used in empirical studies were collected. A coding scheme was established for the empirical data, in which two research team members coded and five team members collectively came together at the end to resolve discrepancies. The goals of LQ have been to publish a wide variety of leadership topics from a wide array of author disciplines, and make it applicable internationally. However, the majority of the authors are from a business and management background and from the United States; limiting the diversification of their publications. Top institutional contributors were also looked at to understand the quality of material submitted; the top being University of Oklahoma. The special issues factor was looked at, and explained that these issues actually produced higher quality articles; a positive for LQ since a very high percentage of their articles are from special issues. During the content analysis LQ also found that the majority of the top 50 cited articles have been in more recent, implying a growing impact. In addition, the amount of topics has expanded, implying that the research is broadening scope on leadership. On the same note, the trend of traditional theory coverage has declined. The current trend, according to this finding, is leaning toward new theories.

The coding scheme, utilized for consistency, provided different categories for the strength of empirical evidence. It was found that the most common research strategy utilized in LQ publications was the sample survey, followed closely by field study. When looking at the mix of quantitative versus qualitative analysis, quantitative increased substantially in the second decade.

A focus group, made up of LQ board members, was then asked to decide whether LQ had reached its goals. It was unanimously decided that they had, but there were suggestions for improvement; mainly on the review process for publication and broadening the scope of the discipline, beyond management and psychology.

Lastly, interviews were conducted with associate and senior editors on their opinions of LQs success in achieving its mission. The main points from these interviews dealt with interdisciplinary success, international success, and top strengths and weaknesses of the journal. It was noted that the articles are more cross-disciplinary than interdisciplinary, as most of the authors are within the same discipline. The goal is to become more interdisciplinary. While the international scope has increased, the interpretation of international is vague; in regards to publishing and submitting. The LQ goal is to have knowledge spanning across the globe on leadership. The editor feedback on strengths and weaknesses included the appreciation for new topic introduction and pushing the material covered on leadership. While the weaknesses were seen in how different disciplines viewed their overall rating.

b. For empirical papers ONLY

The methods used for analyzing publications content and quality were a) content analysis b) citation analysis c) interviews and d) questionnaires.

Citation Analysis:

Sample: 15 total, including LQ, top management and psychology journals to compare impact of leadership studies published.

Measures: Impact factor, where a collection of both two year and five year JIF the Social Science Citation Index and the Journal Citation Reports. As well, impact factor measure included Perish software to establish an h-index and g-index. This was achieved through calculations.

Variables: Utilized multiple top management and psychology journals (14 others) to compare both impact factors.

· Years covered 2002 – 2009

· Ranking system for prominent leaders which contributed

Results: LQ is showing increased impact throughout the years, and was ranked 8th of all journals in 2008; showing growing impact through the years.

Content Analysis

Sample – Articles in LQ between 2002-2009 (353 articles)

Measures: Analytical methods used in empirical articles, research designs used in articles, prominent leadership contributions, type of article (empirical, theoretical, etc…), editor information, editor total articles, and nationality, main leadership contributors, and 50 most cited LQ articles. The measures were achieved through data collection processes, rankings, surveys, interviews, and focus groups.

Variables: Coding scheme for important measures in articles, five research team members, and participant locations were mainly from the United States, but varied.

Results: The number and type of publications showed that the total number of publications has increased, with 55% of publications being empirical and 80% in the form of journal articles. Results also showed that only half of the articles published were done so in regular issues, as LQ created two extra publications through the year, known as “special issues”. Lastly, the diversification of publication background showed very little increase in author discipline and topics covered. As well, little progress was made on the nationality of the authors, where a majority of them were still from the United States.

c. Major Conclusions or Point of the Paper

LQ, a relatively new journal, has tried to establish credibility over the last two decades for being the top journal for leadership study. While internally, they feel they have met those goals by including new and provocative leadership topics, LQ has struggled with gaining acceptance and establishing itself as the top journal by academic institutions. LQ has one focus; leadership. When compared to other journals, this is a very specific focus. As well, a LQ weakness is the means of information is primarily coming from a limited number of disciplines; management and psychology. This limits the scope of coverage and interests that LQ will see in its publications, and encourages stagnation of this topic again, due to the repetitive nature of the same theories. LQ’s goal is to expand beyond this with well supported and unique ideas, which provide an impact and meaningful advancements in the leadership. The amount of articles has undoubtedly increased in LQ in the last decade. However, it remains unclear if this is due to the sheer popularity and revival of this topic, or if they are gaining respect. If leadership, as a topic, is just a trend, then this number is skewed, and will eventually plummet.

LQ knows that it has to scrutinize publications which get released in order to gain respect. As well, they know with the global aspects of the business world, the international focus has to strengthen. A combination of quality studies, diversification of disciplines, and international focus will strengthen LQs position, and reputation. The focus has to be broad enough to cover and introduce solid ideas, but narrow enough to gain knowledge and create an impact on leadership.

LQ’s predictions on the future of leadership focus dealt more with ideas of methods, rather than topics. The methods which LQ presented was reducing reliance on the past survey measures, a more in depth coverage to gain understanding, broaden research teams expertise, the evaluation of different levels of leadership, and greater controlled experiments.

d. Major Strengths and Weaknesses of the Paper

The major strength of the article is LQs interest, and focus, on the impact of their publications. They utilized a comparison with other top journals that fall in a similar genre, which gives validity to the impact measure. The system utilized for the impact measure was extensively covered, and was an established system, as well as the coding scheme. The editors did not give clear topics of where they thought leadership study was headed next, which leaves the door open for any topic with validity, instead of providing limitations set by editors’ expectations or perceptions.

The weaknesses of the paper include the bias and conflict of interest of LQ reviewing their own impact. This conflict and bias especially falls in the focus group and interview section of the study, since all were members of LQ board of directors or directly employed. There is little room for objectivity and makes it difficult for them to remove themselves from the situation. It is hard for someone so close to the situation to provide a unique view, and as a result, ideas will be focused on whatever is their immediate focus. One unfair result to LQ on the impact factor was that it does not have other journals which solely focus on leadership to compare with. The management and psychology journals have a broad focus; therefore they will probably have higher readership and citations about a multitude of topics. LQ’s focus appears to be on increasing the number of articles published, but more focus should be on quality and value added. Finally, LQ noted that its publications had increased, but this is in parallel to a trend in increased leadership focus, so LQ needs to understand whether that is just a fad in popularity of the topic, or if it is gaining respect and heading toward its goal of being the top publication for leadership.

e. Next logical step in building on the paper

LQ should show annual impact on the important measures of interdisciplinary, diversification and international focus, in order to increase viewpoints. LQ should not dismiss ideas which include new ideas intertwined with old theories. The complex nature of leadership, especially when involving diversification, should not be limited to one solution. LQ should also focus on the impacts of new trends, and beyond, including: strategic leadership, leadership in times of economic crisis, females as leaders, international leadership, and leadership with technology changes. The focus in these areas correlates with the change in society, the economy, and business trends of international focus. The evolution of leadership and theories really show the time period specific thoughts, and this scope has to be expanded.

III. Leadership: Current theories, research, and future directions

a. Major Theories/Literature Presented

The literature presents the evolution of leadership through presenting current theoretical and empirical developments.

Current theoretical developments include

Authentic leadership expands on transformational leadership, and provides ethical leadership behaviors, through the presence of listening and accepting follower’s inputs. This is the precursor to the ideas of transformational leadership. One can appeal emotionally to the followers, and influence change, if the followers trust and respect the leader. Many agree on four characteristics of authentic leadership, which are: balanced processing, internalized moral perspective, relational transparency, and self-awareness. In a mix of U.S. and non U.S participants these were found as reliable measures. Authenticity was found to be a positive predictor of satisfaction, commitment, and performance. Although, there is some agreeance on authenticity, more studies and measures will have to be taken in order to solidify the idea’s validity; especially as it relates to diversity.

The coverage of the development of authentic leadership attempts to answer the question of if leaders are born or can they be developed. Past studies, and most studies agree, that while genetics has some impact on leadership roles, it is significantly less impact than the environment and opportunity. This establishes that leadership can be taught and mimicked through environmental situations and role models. However, more studies are needed in order to understand the cognitive effects on different leadership style and development, and the effects of readiness to develop. Additionally, research is needed on the cognitive effects of self-concept; as it seems certain trigger events activate and pull from long term memory for behaviors and style.

Cognitive psychology and the effects on leadership should receive more study on self-concept, in regards to individual and interactions of individuals. The idea of self-concept is the evaluation of oneself and the self-beliefs. Two models of self-concept apply which involve emphasizing specific values and the other is the leader activating an identity for followers to create a collective identity. Finally, the concept of schemas is used in cognitive leadership, where one pulls from organized thoughts and beliefs to makes sense of an event. More studies will delve into how cognitive outcomes can have an effect on developmental leadership.

New theories

The issues with old theories were seen to stem from their lack of evidence on true effectiveness, such as turnover and productivity; the measurements for a company that really matter. The current charisma theories have established some credibility for showing impact in these areas. While there is some evidence to the effectiveness of this type of leadership style, the current studies do not show why certain people engage in this type of leadership, and under what conditions and situations this style is most effective.

Complexity leadership visits the idea that leadership may be more complex and it may be dynamic, responding to the highly dynamic business environment today. The measurement and scope of leader effects in a complexity system are seen as the complex adaptive system (CAS); instead of a narrow scope of leader and follower. The leaders are then expected to adapt according to the adaptations of the system. The three main leadership roles under this model are adaptive, administrative, and enabling. More research is needed to support this concept, and will be difficult and timely to collect; as it deals with different interactions and situations over a long period of time.

Leader Member Exchange (LMX) describes the relationship between leader and follower, and different relationships are formed between different followers, as a result, affecting the leader member outcomes. Some studies show higher levels of performance and citizenship behavior accompany LMX. However, this leadership theory is criticized due to inconsistencies in measurement, and the lack of objective measures of performance.

Servant Leadership

As its name implies, this is a leader who basically serves and is dedicated to the follower. Limited empirical evidence exists, but what does exist shows positive results with job satisfaction and commitment. Followers believe servant leaders are genuine and therefore trust is increased. Measurement is not consistent for Servant Leadership. Criteria would need to be established, in order to better gauge the outcomes and effects of servant leaders.

b. For empirical papers ONLY – N/A

c. Major Conclusions or Point of the Paper

Over time leadership has moved from an individual focus to a group and interactional focus, and an overall study, instead of one specific thing that defines a leader. It is a dynamic engagement between, not just the individual, but a multitude of interactions. Leadership impact seems to be most affected by situations and the follower’s perceptions. Many different new theories are taking place to compensate for this dynamic relationship. However, not one of them has enough empirical evidence to support a universal following of the particular theory.

The need for a universal acceptance on a formula for leadership is desired, with so many changes and pressures on performance. However, it does not appear that any study has the proof required to establish itself as this formula. The mere view of leadership and what needs to be studied has shifted. A lot of the current studies, as well as past studies lack measurement consistency which heavily hinders the validity of the results on any theory presented.

d. Major Strengths and Weaknesses of the Paper

The paper had strengths of covering a wide variety of new theories, and proposed ample suggestions for further study. The variety of leadership theories which the paper tried to cover is highly relevant to the current environment. Businesses are moving more toward team structures, which the paper addressed. As well, culture and eLeadership were also addressed to try to assist with gaps in current issues; mainly due to globalization. A part of being able to come up with, and be open to new theories was the point in the paper of basically removing past pre conceptions of leadership and previous analysis.

Weaknesses of the paper were the absence of coverage of strategic leadership. Although it was briefly mentioned, and recognized it as a valid future study, it did not cover this topic at all. The dismissal of pre-existing theories and past analysis can also be a weakness. While some of the past data is unsubstantiated, there are some areas of strength in past theories. Pieces can be taken out of most theories and have strength to them.

e. Next Logical Step in Building on the Paper

The next steps of this paper would be to understand further the cognitive aspects of a leader, in order to define what leaders think, what situations might drive different thinking and responses, and why. Leadership development would also be a good area to focus, and how cognitive characteristics affect the strength of development, and overall success. Cognitive characteristics should also be studied more with the follower. The follower has a direct impact, and is directly impacted by the leader. The follower’s perceptions, beliefs, and attitudes all appear to be relevant. Strategic leadership will also need to be further investigated, with the primary focus on executives who have been able to create profit and growth, consecutively, to understand what types of linkage there is to certain leadership styles. Universal agreement of measurement criteria needs to be established for leadership in order to make the results more meaningful.

IV. Leadership theory and research in the new millennium: Current theoretical trends and changing perspectives

a. Major Theories/Literature Presented

This article is focused on process centered issues with current leadership theories, in order to understand details and important concepts which have been missing in previous theories. Understanding leadership as a process helps drive the factors, and thereby, create a path of organization to areas which should be focused on.

When pulling articles on leadership and coding them, the most popular current theories were focused on charisma, followed by leader information processing, follower cognitions, and relational theories. Even trait theories still exist, but are usually combined with other ideas.

Strategic leadership is the top emerging theory, as well, interest has been shown on team leadership and Leader Member Exchange (LMX). Overall, these theories have a theme and apply the social and dynamic aspect of leadership, instead of creating leadership in a bubble. A broad look at development and emergent leaders, may lead to fresh ideas based on this topic, but both are seen to be impacted by traits and experience.

The process framework for organizing theories allows for a multilevel analysis of the processes, in return, allowing focus in the right areas to truly make an impact. The three types of emergent processes are identified as global, compositional, and compilational. Global are static and level specific, compositional is an in-level process which combines individual components, while not changing the quality. In contrast, compilation does reflect a change in quality and function, when combined.

b. For empirical papers ONLY

Content Analysis

Sample – 752 articles from 10 top ranking journals, which publish leadership articles, and have high impact factors, including Leadership Quarterly (LQ). The 752 articles are all within a twelve year period of leadership publications.

Measures: Analytical methods, type of study, data collection timing, level of analysis and form of emergence, and emergence theory match/mismatch; where the method of collection for the process does not match the theory being proposed.

Variables: Random search of articles for leadership between 2000 and 2012. The research must be original and have leadership as the primary focus. Standardized coding protocol was established to code articles, and the coding was completed by two independent team members.

Results: Each form of emergence is trending upward for theories, overcomplicating leadership study, and of these a high amount are global; mismatching through individual focus on a global form of emergence. In addition, the study shows that the form of emergence most likely to appear out of quantitative analysis is global, while theoretical only studies tended to lean toward compilation. When compilation was noted, it tended to affect every level of analysis; by the very nature of compilation.

c. Major Conclusions or Point of the Paper

Leadership is a multilevel process, including top down and bottom up influences. The process issues must be identified in order to continue with meaningful research on leadership. It is a dynamic process which does not exist in short term; in contrast, it expands over long time periods. Past research has failed to cover how leaders make organizations effective. The organization of past theories processes into schemes helps associate with events and possibly see similarities within the different theories.

Context, social aspects and the dynamic role of leadership is now a part of the emerging studies and focus. While some of the former theories are building on new ideas, and intertwined with them, two theories appear to be disappearing in interest; contingency theory and behavioral theories. Data collection and theories should be based on the process framework, allowing for greater potential to focus in areas which are relevant to achieving progress on valid leadership ideas. The processes have been categorized into three areas: global, compositional, and compilational. Processes are fluid and change due to different situations, so linking these processes to outcomes can guide future study. Compilational theories tend to reflect these characteristics and establish multilevel fluid processes.

The form of emergence can guide the methodology. Unfortunately, global emergence, by nature, is single level, so it promotes stability. Too much of this methodology could be counterintuitive to the concept of leadership, which does not perform in a stable environment. As a result, quantitative studies only show the outcomes, but it is compilation, through theoretical studies, which will provide the process and outcomes. Much of the current research focuses on global emergence, so there is room to make significant progress of knowledge on leadership, if the processes are investigated.

d. Major Strengths and Weaknesses of the Paper

The major strengths of the paper were the utilization of multiple top journals known for publication of leadership. This enables a wide scope of coverage and ultimately increases the reliability of the study. As well, the form of emergence was strength, in itself, through simplifying categories in order to understand the impact of each article.

Some weaknesses of the paper were the volume of papers to analyze. The high volume decreased the feasibility of analyzing every theory and process. In addition, the lack of quantitative analysis on the actual form emergence, the trends shown, and how it has had an impact.

e. Next Logical Step in Building on the Paper

Having a greater focus on compilation emergence, and understanding how the processes affect each level and interaction outcomes in specific situation will help build on the ideas of this paper. To date, there has not been a major break-through on leadership and a consensus of what makes effective outcomes. Diving into the process through greater theoretical focus might help resolve this issue. In addition, understanding how leaders impact, and are impacted by, the process is critical to understand. In other words, gaining clarity on where they exist, and what role they play, in the system.


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