Prefigurative leadership: The Building of Leadership Roles in a Municipal Campaign

Catégorie : Article dans une revue

Auteur(s) : Camille Bedock , Magali Della Sudda

Nom de la revue : Leadership

Année de publication : 2023

Résumé :

Most research on leadership focuses on how leaders view and exercise power when in office. In contrast, we study ‘prefigurative leadership’ during a municipal campaign, i.e. the way in which putative leaders construct, stage and consolidate a leadership style that foreshadows the way they will exercise power if they get elected. We rely on the study of the 2020 French municipal election in Bordeaux, characterized by political alternation, succession to a strong leader, and electoral uncertainty. Based on the triangulation of qualitative data (interviews, in situ observations of campaign events, press coverage and internal documents on the organization of the campaign), this article shows that candidates endorse a great variety of prefigurative leadership styles and juggle with a series of dilemmas inherent with the complexity of leadership roles. More generally, it contributes to the wider literature on leadership by showing how the study of political campaigns enables to study leadership in context as an ongoing process based on performance.

Référence HAL : halshs-03865390

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