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Ethical leadership in troubled times

Ethical leadership in troubled times

The idea that leadership and ethics are much like two sides of the same coin (Solomon, 1992; Burns, 2004 & 2010; Covey, 2015’ Kernaghan, 2003) is a metaphor that has been suggested by a wide variety of scholars across many fields and applies in public administration, education, business, religion, and interpersonal daily living. Bennis and Nanus (2007) are among the many scholars who have called for a transformative approach to ethical leadership that raises the bar for leaders in honoring their ethical obligations. The importance of virtues in leadership was a fundamental principle called for by Aristotle (2013) in his examination of the moral responsibilities of leadership and his thoughtful discussion of the leader’s role in helping society to achieve a better world – despite the multitude of pressures facing individuals and society. In introducing this special edition, we are deeply concerned about a world wherein many of those who lead fail to comprehend the consequences of their actions on those to whom they owe what several scholars and practitioners have called “covenantal” duties (Pava, 2003; DePree, 2004; Covey, 2005). Blinded by short-term self-interest, the actions of government leaders, politicians, educators, and even religious leaders call into question the moral and ethical rationales used by those to whom great responsibility has been given. Pulitzer Prize winning author, Thomas L. Friedman (2009) has decried the failures of leaders of business and government to make the tough decisions in a world seemingly headed for growing political and military conflict, economic decline, and environmental turmoil.


Communicating with stakeholders when bad news is uncertain,Ethical leadership in troubled times,Good enough leadership: realism without cynicism,Positive leadership and adding value – a lifelong journey,Reforming the criminal justice system – an ethical leadership approach,Social responsibility in a troubled world

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