ABSTRACT

This chapter seeks to argue that the leadership-as-practice (L-A-P) perspective on leadership should see itself as having a root in democratic values. It introduces the notion of "multiple distributions" of leadership and put forward an analytical framework based on this to help in framing critical investigations of leadership as a distributed and democratic phenomenon. Democratic practice from this perspective involves working subjectively and inter-subjectively towards two aims that interconnect: development as whole human beings, with ethical, spiritual, cognitive, and other dimensions, and inclusive participation, which involves critically interrogating injustices and power abuses and changing these through practice. Explicit recognition of this rich democratic root would help L-A-P to extend its reach into questions of ethics, values, and human well-being that are inescapably part of leadership practice. The practice in any particular context that is the focus of study by L-A-P as an analytical perspective is not of necessity or by definition fair and democratic.