The typical leadership study: Assumptions, implications, and potential remedies

Samuel T. Hunter, Katrina E. Bedell-Avers, Michael D. Mumford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Scopus citations


Since the turn of the century, the area of leadership has seen notable growth in the amount of research conducted. As such, it now seems appropriate to evaluate how most leadership research is conducted, considering in particular the assumptions that are made when conducting the typical leadership study. Specifically, we explored the assumptions made with regard to (a) subordinates, (b) leaders, (c) context, and (d) the processes involved in leadership. Consideration of these assumptions reveals a number of problems ranging from simple methodological issues to more substantive theory-based concerns. Potential remedies are presented, along with a consideration of the long-term impact associated with the typical leadership study approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)435-446
Number of pages12
JournalLeadership Quarterly
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


Dive into the research topics of 'The typical leadership study: Assumptions, implications, and potential remedies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this