For a basic Leadership slide presentation, click here:
Mapping the Leadership (research and practice) terrain:
In the Leadership literature, we distinguish between descriptive studies (What traits characterize leaders? How would you describe business or political leaders in a given place? etc) and normative studies (How should leaders act or behave? What would we recommend to leaders? What traits should they possess or develop?).
In normative research (which usually dwells on leadership styles), in turn, the following themes have emerged:
We can also distinguish between theoretical research (Which are the various leadership theories? This usually involves a characterization of the History of Leadership Thought) and empirical research (gathering specific data on leaders in specific places or points in time or situations, correlating those data with some other variable/s). [See Theoretical vs. Empirical leadership studies.]
In any case, "debates over the definition of leadership are really debates over what researchers think constitutes good leadership. The ultimate question is not "What is leadership?" but "What is good leadership?" The word good refers to both ethics and competence" [Ciulla, Joanne B. "Leadership Ethics: Mapping the Territory," Business Ethics Quarterly, Vol. 5, No. 1, Jan. 1995].
What has been the place of ethics in leadership studies?
Clearly, (1) leadership studies have had strong normative implications that have not been fully developed by their authors. Likewise, (2) there is room for expanding the ethical implications of these theories and research findings. Normative theories of leadership, such as transforming leadership and servant leadership, are not well-developed in terms of their philosophic implications. They need more analysis as ethical theories and more empirical testing.
"The territory of ethics lies at the heart of leadership studies and has veins in leadership research. Ethics also extends to territories waiting to be explored. As an area of applied ethics, leadership ethics needs to take into account research on leadership, and it should be responsive to the pressing ethical concerns of society. Today the most important and most confusing public
debate is over what ethical issues are relevant in judging whether a person
should lead and whether a person is capable of leadership. Research into leadership ethics would not only help us with questions like, "What sort of person should lead?" and "What are the moral responsibilities of leadership?", it should give us a better understanding of the nature of leadership." [Ciulla, 1995]
[Faculty page of Joanne Ciulla]
"The Moral Capital of Leaders":
Virtue's Role in Today's Business World
NEW YORK, 26 JUNE 2004 (ZENIT)
With ethics scandals still fresh in many countries, a couple of recent books examine what role morality can play in avoiding such problems. What the business world should do, says Alejo José G. Sison, professor of business ethics at the University of Navarra, Spain, is to give a higher priority to moral factors.
Click here for: Empirical Studies on Leadership
Click here for: Servant Leadership
Click here for: Virtuous Leadership
Click here for: "Humanistic Management"
Click here for: "The Moral Capital of Leaders" (by Alejo José Sison)
Click here for: Rethinking the University
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