Panel 3: Public and Political Leadership

New avenues in leadership research in public administration and political science

Chaired by: dr. Sabina Stiller (WUR) & dr. Karin Lasthuizen (VU) &

This panel attempts to take a fresh look at leadership research in public administration and political sciences at a time that a number of comprehensive (edited) volumes of public and political leadership are being assembled.

This panel seeks to address the central question: What has leadership research in both disciplines achieved so far and what aspects, dimensions or effects of leadership remain underexplored? In particular:

  • Where does leadership fit in in an era of governance, which tends to stress the interrelatedness of government and other actors in many areas of policy-making and implementation?
  • What to expect from leadership within public organizations and in inter-organizational networks with public objectives?
  • With an eye to assessing governance, what does leadership add to the quality of governance in such complex environments?
  • And, in the face of various socio-economic challenges, what kind of leadership do we need in today’s government and public organizations?

This panel theme is connected to two of the four NIG research programme themes.

First, leadership in all its facets remains an important theme in public management settings, both for management within organizations and in the context of public sector reform.

Second, leadership is relevant to the ‘multi-actor governance settings in complexity’ assuming that complex multi-actor networks have a need for steering beyond day-to-day management, both in procedural terms and in terms of their substantive objectives.

We welcome conceptual and empirical papers that deal with these or similar questions as well as papers that review the blind spots of existing leadership concepts with an eye to discovering new research agendas.

This panel welcomes colloquium members of PUPOL as well as other interested scholars.