85418 - Models of Political Leadership

Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

The course provides the analytical tools to examine the phenomenon of the political leadership in its different facets, basing on approaches and research from a range of disciplines : the analysis of political institutions, organization theory, cognitive psychology, and political theory. At the end of the course students are able to distinguish different leadership styles ; to appraise the role and the function of the leadership in contemporary democracies ; to assess the impact of variables such as gender and culture on the selection and the style of political leaders.

Course contents

Main subjects are:

Psychological theories of leadership

Relationship between leaders and followers

Leadership and gender

Leadership and theory of democracy

Leadership, personalization and presidentialization

Leadership and populism


Rhodes and t'Hart, (a cura di), Oxford Handbook of Political Leadership, Oxford University Press, 2014: capitoli 8: Margaret G. HermannPolitical psychology and the study of political leadership; capitolo 25: Cas Mudde and Cristóbal Rovira KaltwasserPopulism and political leadership,

N. Keohane, Thinking about Leadership, Princeton University Press, 2010: capitolo 5, pp. 155-193

Campus D, Lo stile del leader, Decidere e comunicare nella democrazie contemporanee. Il Mulino, 2016: cap 1, pp. 19-47.

Campus, D.Women Political Leaders and the media, Palgrave, 2013, cap 1, pp.10-21

Poguntke e Webb (a cura di ), The presidentialization of politics, Oxford University Press, 2005, capitolo 1

Joseph Nye, Leadership e potere, Laterza, 2008, capitolo 3, pp. 63-99.

Teaching methods

Lectures and seminars.

Assessment methods

Written text with open ended questions


Students attending classes (minimum 14 classes attended) and enrolled during the first 2 weeks of the course could make presentations. This will give them a bonus to be added to the final grade (more details will be given at the beginning of the course).

Office hours

See the website of Donatella Campus