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2012/2013  KAN-SOL_OS50  Leadership

English Title

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Quarter
Course period Spring
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Eva Boxenbaum - Department of Organization
Main Category of the Course
  • Organization
Last updated on 09-07-2012
Learning objectives
At the end of the course students should be able to:
  • Understand the relational and contextual aspects of leadership
  • Critically assess different theories and their relationship to one another
  • Apply theoretical concepts thoughtfully in the conduct of discourse analysis
  • Formulate and structure their analysis in good academic language
  • Identify how specific leaders mobilize followers in a given context
  • Analyze how mobilization is accomplished discursively
  • Socially construct alternative mobilization discourses for a specific leader
Type of test Home Assignment
Marking scale 7-step scale
Second examiner No second examiner
Exam period May/June
Aids Please, see the detailed regulations below
Duration Please, see the detailed regulations below
Individual project (scientific paper) (max. 10 standard pages).
The regular exam and the deadline for submitting the project will be in June. The make-up/re-exam takes place in August.
The deadline for handing in a new project will be announced by the secretariat. The theme of the re-exam will be different from the theme of the ordinary exam
The paper applies selected aspects of the theoretical curriculum to analyze how a leader of the student’s own choice motivates (or fails to motivate) followers through a certain self-presentation. The method is a discourse analysis of a self-selected text by the leader (a speech, biography, interview, etc.).
Course content

Aim of the course
The course enables students to both de- and re-construct leader-follower relations. They learn to deconstruct leadership discourse and to identify the archetypes and templates behind leadership expectations (of which organizational actors may be unaware). Re-construction takes place as students learn to craft alternative leadership discourses and extend their own repertoire of leadership relations.

The course introduces students to contemporary leadership theory, which views leadership as a relationship involving a leader, followers and a context. The focus is on how leaders mobilize followers within a particular social and organizational context. This mobilization is constructed through an (inter-)action that takes place primarily through language and discourse.

The course spans from the analysis of leaders’ motivation of followers in discourse to the establishing of effective and sustainable expressions of leadership. Students are encouraged to identify and expand their own approaches to leadership and to identify the ways of motivating followers that they find ethically acceptable.

Overlap with the course Managing Organizational Change 
The course Leadership extends the theoretical orientation of Managing organizational change to the study of leadership. Students learn theoretical concepts and analytical tools that they then use to analyze leaders through texts. 

Teaching methods
A mix of lectures and cases. Students are expected to participate in class discussions of the cases.
Expected literature

DeRue, D. S. & Ashford, S. J. 2010. “ Who will lead and who will follow? A social process of leadership identity construction in organizations”. Academy of Management Review, 35(4): 627–647.
Fanelli, A. & Grasselli, N. I. 2005. “Defeating the Minotaur: The Construction of CEO Charisma on the US Stock Market”. Organization Studies 27(6): 811-832.
Jackson, B. G. 1999. “The Goose that Laid the Golder Egg?: A Rhetorical Critique of Stephen Covey and the Effectiveness Movement’. Journal of Management Studies 36(3): 353-377.
Khurana, R. 2002. “The Curse of the Superstar CEO”. Harvard Business Review 80(9): 60-66.
Steyrer, J. 1998. “Charisma and the Archetypes of Leadership”. Organization Studies 19(5): 807-828.
Waldman, D. A., Ramirez, G. G., House, R. J., & Puranam, P. 2001. “Does leadership matter? CEO leadership attributes and profitability under conditions of perceived environmental uncertainty.” Academy of Management Journal 44(1): 134-143.

Last updated on 09-07-2012