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Submit a Manuscript to the Journal
Journal of Change Management

For a Special Issue on
Towards SDGs: Place Leadership and Change Management in the Face of Complex Ecological, Economic and Social Transitions

Manuscript deadline
31 March 2022

Cover image - Journal of Change Management

Special Issue Editor(s)

Alessandro Sancino, University of Milan-Bicocca (IT) & The Open University (UK)
[email protected]

Markku Sotarauta, Tampere University
[email protected]

Andrew Beer, University of South Australia
[email protected]

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Towards SDGs: Place Leadership and Change Management in the Face of Complex Ecological, Economic and Social Transitions

Scholarship on place-based leadership has evolved considerably over the past decade, growing considerably in both the range and sophistication of methodologies deployed, the number of researchers contributing to this area of enquiry, and the range of nations participating in these debates.  However, many critical issues remain unexplored within this field, with too little attention paid to questions of gender; place leadership within minority populations; the connection between First Nations peoples, place and the expression of leadership; and the relationship between place-based leadership and the environmental agenda, including climate change.  There are issues also around the degree to which place-based leadership is able to draw upon, and contribute to, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  A more explicit interface with the SDGs offers the potential to provide new insights and add scale to the implementation of place-based leadership at the local scale.

This Special Issue seeks to advance the intellectual agenda around studies of, and into, place-based leadership and how they can contribute to reframe leadership and organizational practice overall.  This special issue seeks in particular to better understand the role of place-based leadership within an increasingly complex and changing world.  The goal is to better conceptualize, explore and explain how place-based leadership can better contribute to the management and leadership of change in the face of the complex ecological, economic and social transitions needed to address SDGs. These transitions to a more ecologically aware and more equitable economy, to more democratic organizations and to a more inclusive society are critical to our future, and often driven by groups of actors – individuals, businesses, government agencies, community groups, Indigenous peoples and other civic minded people – coming together to take leadership of change. Both ‘place’ and a sense of place occupies a central position within this network of social, economic and political forces to generate purpose, alignment and commitment towards collective and publicly valued goals.

Place-based leadership implicitly embraces a perspective of leadership as the pursuit for delivery on purpose , but too often research has failed to draw out the positive dimensions of place-based leadership and how they can be made more systematic in order to deliver benefits for all.

Within this overarching logic in mind, this Special Issue welcomes papers that address the following topics:

  • The alignment between the Sustainable Development Goals and place-based leadership. How can we better understand the interconnection?
  • The relationship between the agency of place leadership and other forms of agency, including the part played by the government sector, the not-for-profit sector and the private sector, including social enterprises. There would be value in knowing more about whether, and how, business leaders can function as place leaders, and whether those in charge of some types of business are more likely to also lead their communities;
  • Place-leadership and climate change, including the processes of energy transition and the leadership needed to facilitate a change for good;
  • Gender and place leadership. This includes both the recognition of women as actors of change leadership at the community, regional and national scales, but also the perspectives that may arise from better understanding the roles of LGBTIQ communities and their contribution to place-grounded leadership;
  • The understanding of leadership and its relationship to place in disadvantaged communities;
  • The role of politics, struggle and the negative impact and use of place leadership towards SDGs; and,
  • The tension between place and digital in the transition towards a more digitalized economy and society.

Submission Instructions

Papers are due to the editors by the end of March 2022, with anonymised manuscripts that meet the journal’s guidelines emailed to Dr Alessandro Sancino at (Article must include a MAD statement as outlined here https://www.tandfonline.com/action/authorSubmission?show=instructions&journalCode=rjcm20) :

Alessandro.Sancino [email protected]

Instructions for AuthorsSubmit an Article