Excerpt from course description

Research on Leadership


This course targets research on the characteristics of effective leaders and the conditions for effective leadership. The central premises are that leader effectiveness is dependent on leader characteristics, task characteristics, and contextual influences while the concept leader effectiveness itself is multifaceted. Challenges in this field is that the influence mechanisms themselves have not always been clearly understood and that a large number of theories have been postulated over the years. Other challenges are lack of adequate conceptual foundations and critique of survey based methods. Despite this, leadership research has made progress during the last decades through an emphasis on leader traits, dyadic leadership theory, multi-source measurement, and other measurement developments, among other things related to Natural Language Processing Theory (NLP). Several developments in these areas will be emphasized in this course in addition to a focus on research design issues. Thus, the course aims at giving students an advanced theoretical basis for some of the scientific problems that are at the frontiers of leadership research today.

Course content

  • Leader traits and leader behaviors
  • Dangerous leadership. Dark side.
  • Transformational and charismatic leadership.
  • Strategic and upper echelons theories
  • Leadership development.
  • Measurement issues.
  • 360 degree leader evaluations
  • Research design issues.


This is an excerpt from the complete course description for the course. If you are an active student at BI, you can find the complete course descriptions with information on eg. learning goals, learning process, curriculum and exam at portal.bi.no. We reserve the right to make changes to this description.