Case, P., French, R. and Simpson, P.
Philosophy of leadership.
In: Bryman, A., Collinson, D., Grint, K., Jackson, B. and Uhl-Bien, M., eds.
SAGE Handbook of Leadership.
London: Sage, pp. 685-727.
Available from: http://eprints.uwe.ac.uk/11782
Publisher's URL: http://www.uk.sagepub.com/books/Book233409
We do not intend this chapter to be simply a dry chronicle or catalogue of leadership philosophies. For one thing, even were such an audacious project pursued, it would doubtless prove to be more than anyone could possibly accomplish in a lifetime and, for certain, could not be confined to an eight-thousand word chapter. More productive, we suggest, is the task of doing philosophy of leadership. But what exactly might that ‘doing’ entail? At least four strategies of enquiry suggest themselves: (1) to consider the explicit and implicit philosophies informing contemporary leadership studies; (2) to examine the semantics and meaning-in-use of the terms ‘lead’, ‘leader’, ‘leadership’ and their putative relationship to ‘philosophy’; (3) to consider the explicit and implicit philosophies of leadership that may be discovered through an examination of the history of ideas pertaining broadly to ‘leadership’; and, (4) to suggest ways in which ‘leadership philosophy’, in contrast to ‘philosophy of leadership’, might be developed. Each of these four strategies, moreover, reveals a set of problematics and enables the establishment of some general parameters for the philosophical study and practice of leadership.
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