The world is changing. Gone are the days when one country, one group, one person could dictate and deliver policies and programs in the best interests of all. We live in an interconnected world where decisions have massive ripple effects into the lives of many. And understanding “best interests” means understanding the multitude of perspectives that come from different backgrounds, experiences, and expertise. In this context, the concept of leadership is evolving. True leadership is not solely defined by the acts of a single authoritative figure anymore—it’s also about enabling many to work together toward a common goal.

NYU Wagner has been a pioneer in challenging the view of heroic leadership and advancing an understanding of collective leadership. And yet we also focus on developing individual capabilities. Why? Because the individual side of leadership is about developing your passion. That’s crucial to understanding how your passion can connect to others in order to deliver social transformation. By cultivating both the “me” and “we” perspectives of leadership, NYU Wagner helps you understand how to mobilize groups to develop a driving purpose and build commitment—together.

We are also committed to creating and supporting intentional opportunities, programs, and initiatives—inside and outside the classroom—where you can develop your leadership capabilities. As a result, you will be ready to help build successful organizations, craft relevant policies, and deliver effective programs, as well as be an agent of change who can help drive positive social transformation that truly incorporates all the interests involved.

WAGTalk: Sonia Ospina, "A Research Agenda on Collective Leadership and Social Change"

A Research Agenda on Collective Leadership and Social Change

Professor Sonia Ospina discusses her research on collective leadership, exploring the ways communities try to make social change.

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Leadership in Action at Wagner

Leadership in Action at Wagner is a virtual space that brings together a community of practice at NYU Wagner who study, mobilize, and develop effective leadership in public service. By providing public access to academic papers, reports, teaching materials, and briefs, Leadership in Action at Wagner is also a valuable resource for leaders in governments, nonprofits, and communities.


Sonia M. Ospina, Faculty Co-Director and Professor of Public Management and Policy
Erica Gabrielle Foldy, Faculty Co-Director and Associate Professor of Public and Nonprofit Management
Amparo Hofmann-Pinilla, Director, Ghanaian Women’s Social Leadership Program

Email: wagner.leadership@nyu.edu
Phone: 212.992.9880
Website: wagner.nyu.edu/leadership

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