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Poor Leadership and Bad Governance

Reassessing Presidents and Prime Ministers in North America, Europe and Japan Edited by Ludger Helms, University of Innsbruck, Austria
Focusing on the presidents and prime ministers of the G8 – the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Russia and Japan – it explores the complex relationship between weak and ineffective leadership, undemocratic leadership techniques, and bad policies from a broad comparative perspective. What makes leaders weak or bad in different contexts? What are the consequences of their actions and behaviour? And has there been any learning from negative experience? These questions are at the centre of this fascinating joint inquiry that involves a team of truly distinguished leadership scholars.
Extent: 224 pp
Hardback Price: $120.00 Web: $108.00
Publication Date: 2012
ISBN: 978 0 85793 272 3
Availability: In Stock
Paperback Price: $39.95 Web: $31.96
Publication Date: 2014
ISBN: 978 1 78195 413 3
Availability: In Stock
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  • Business and Management
  • Business Leadership
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Leadership
In leadership research there is a long tradition of focusing attention on
the great and successful leaders and, more recently, on issues of good
governance. This study breaks new ground by looking systematically into
the manifestations and causes of poor leadership and bad governance in
some of the world’s most powerful democracies.

Focusing on the presidents and prime ministers of the G8 – the United
States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Russia and
Japan – it explores the complex relationship between weak and ineffective
leadership, undemocratic leadership techniques, and bad policies from
a broad comparative perspective. What makes leaders weak or bad
in different contexts? What are the consequences of their actions and
behaviour? And has there been any learning from negative experience?
These questions are at the centre of this fascinating joint inquiry that
involves a team of truly distinguished leadership scholars.

This book will prove invaluable for scholars and students of leadership,
political science, contemporary history, and related academic disciplines.
Readers with a general interest in public affairs and political history will
also find plenty to interest them.
‘A comparative look at bad policies, undemocratic aspects of leadership, and the question of what makes a leader weak in different contexts, Poor Leadership and Bad Governance is an invaluable contribution to modern political science shelves. . . Highly recommended.’
– Midwest Book Review

‘Leaders are not always heroes. Bad public leadership is a big problem. If we are serious about holding our public leaders to account, then we need to know why they were bad, and why we supported them. Ludger Helms and his distinguished team tackle these difficult questions with sympathy, not cynicism. Their careful and insightful analysis alerts us to the dangers of venal and poorly performing leaders.’
– R.A.W. Rhodes, University of Southampton, UK

‘Leadership and the lack of it is a central but underexplored issue in the study of contemporary politics. Ludger Helms is to be congratulated for bringing together a group of leading scholars to examine the relationship between leadership and governance.’
– William E. Paterson OBE, Aston Centre for Europe, UK
Contributors: J. Gaffney, L. Helms, E.S. Krauss, J. Malloy, G. Pasquino, G. Peele, R. Pekkanen, B.A. Rockman, R. Sakwa
Contents:

1. Poor Leadership and Bad Governance: Conceptual Perspectives and Questions for Comparative Inquiry
Ludger Helms

2. In the Grip of Context: American Presidents and their Choices
Bert A. Rockman

3. Not Necessarily Leadership But Leadership if Necessary: Canadian Prime Ministers and the Management of Expectations
Jonathan Malloy

4. The United Kingdom: Prime Ministerial Leadership and the Challenge of Governance
Gillian Peele

5. Presidents Behaving Badly: Poor Leadership and Bad Governance in France
John Gaffney

6. Revisiting the German Chancellorship: Leadership Weakness and Democratic Autocracy in the Federal Republic
Ludger Helms

7. Italy: Goodness, Badness, and the Trajectories of Mediocrity
Gianfranco Pasquino

8. Leadership, Governance and Statecraft in Russia
Richard Sakwa

9. Profiles in Discourage: Prime Ministerial Leadership in Post-war Japan
Ellis S. Krauss and Robert Pekkanen

10. Conclusion
Ludger Helms

Index