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Aimé Césaire et la politique

Sept leçons de leadership

Fred Constant

The Caribbean has yielded many leaders with statesmanship abilities that are on par with the very best in the world; it is to one of these that the present essay is devoted. Specifically, it attempts to understand the nature of the political leadership that Aimé Césaire has epitomized for more than fifty years in his native Martinique and abroad. In doing so, it examines what accounts for his political appeal and his capacity to pursue his political vision. The essay also suggests some insights that the rest of the world could draw from Césaire's experience.

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Peter Scholten

Policy innovation is necessary for many environmental issues such as climate change and water management. Highly motivated individuals, who are both willing and able to take the lead and press home innovative proposals and as such transform existing policy, are vital in this process. This article focuses on such individuals. An exploration of the literature is confronted with the findings of an empirical study among local policy makers with a reputation for daring. The result is a conceptual map that can be used to further explore and understand the role of leadership and particularly daring decision making in environmental policy innovation.

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Sergio Fabbrini and Marc Lazar

This chapter discusses Renzi’s leadership with regard to his party and the government. The main argument is that Renzi was able to use his party to support the government through his double role of secretary (of the party) and prime minister (of the government). However, the support of the party for the government’s actions has been regularly contested by an internal left-wing faction and has been weakened by the disaggregation and political autonomy of the local and regional party organizations. The chapter describes and analyzes the divisions within the national party, the difficulty of controlling local and regional organizations and leaders, and the parliamentary achievements of the government, which came about due primarily to the popularity of the prime minister. The personal leadership of Renzi has been a resource for promoting governmental reforms, but a leadership unsupported by a party will have difficulty facing future political and policy challenges.

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Joachim Schild

France and Germany played a highly visible leadership role during the management of the Euro crisis and the efforts to design a reform governance framework for the Euro area. This article provides a conceptualization of this bilateral leadership, which is then applied to trace the process of Franco-German leadership during the ongoing crisis of the Euro area. Franco-German leadership grew ever more important as the crisis deepened. After the French presidential election of 2012, however, the divergences between the two core states of the Euro area deepened and made the exercise of joint leadership more difficult to achieve. I consider this leadership role to be based on a compromise by proxy logic in which France and Germany, starting from divergent positions, strike bilateral compromises acceptable to other member states that feel their own interests are represented by either France or Germany. Their common capacity to find suitable remedies to cope with crisis, however, is not beyond doubt. The Franco-German approach followed an additive logic, combining the temporary and permanent financial support schemes-a French preference-with a concomitant strengthening of fiscal rules advocated by Germany. In the end, the two governments did not develop a common comprehensive strategy based on a shared conceptual framework.

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Kate A. Berry

This article focuses on the United States (US), looking at the American culture war specifically as it relates to environmental issues. Looking at the US today is a reminder that the culture wars are as overtly political as they are culturally motivated, and they diminish social cohesion. The term “culture wars” is defined as increases in volatility, expansion of polarization, and obvious conflicts in various parts of the world between, on the one hand, those who are passionate about religiously motivated politics, traditional morality, and anti-intellectualism, and, on the other hand, those who embrace progressive politics, cultural openness, and scientific and modernist orientations. The article examines this ideological war in contemporary environmental management debates. It identif es characteristics of environmental leadership and discusses how networks can act as environmental leaders.

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Charles Herrick and Joanna Pratt

There is great interest within the water sector regarding the prospect of sustainable operations. Water utilities tend to be conservative entities characterized by organizational inertia, making achievement of sustainable operations a challenge of cultural transformation. We suggest that the construct of "wicked" problems provides a useful heuristic for leaders and other champions attempting to transform water utility culture to achieve sustainable operations. We observe that the cultural transformation toward sustainable water operations seems to be facilitated through the exercise of particular leadership traits, including the ability to craft and communicate a sustainability narrative, willingness and ability to diffuse authority, and an adaptive or learning-oriented outlook. Based on literature review and case research with US water utilities, we identify factors that can act either to enable or constrain efforts to transform utility culture so as to be more amenable to sustainable operations. We explain how each of these factors pertains to the circumstances of water utilities and provide a matrix with which utility leaders and sustainability champions can enact a plan of organizational transformation. We conclude by outlining research topics that flow from our arguments and observations.

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Sons of Krishna and sons of Bolivar

Charismatic kinship and leadership across India and Venezuela

Lucia Michelutti

This article uses the analytical tool of divine kinship to explore political charisma across Indian and Venezuelan democratic social revolutions. In both contexts, charismatic elected political leaders build their image of strength and action on a wide repertoire of cultural and religious resources that are legitimated by divine kinship. The juxtaposition of the Indian and Venezuelan political ethnographies shows how charismatic kinship inflects lived understandings of popular sovereignty and opens up spaces for holding personality politics accountable.

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The Precarious Center

Religious Leadership among African Christians

Thomas G. Kirsch

This article addresses a long-standing conundrum in the anthropology of religion concerning the ambiguous status of religious leaders: they are subjects of power in that they are able to exert power over others, yet they are objects of power in that they rely on empowerment through others. Taking African-initiated Pentecostal-charismatic Christianity in Zambia as my example, I argue that church leaders' strategies to stabilize their authority have unintended consequences since these strategies can contribute to the precariousness of their positions. By drawing fundamental distinctions between themselves and members of the laity as regards their own extraordinariness, church leaders raise high expectations about their own capacities that may turn out to be impossible to fulfill. Yet even the opposite strategy of strengthening one's authority by embedding oneself in socio-religious networks can eventually lead to a destabilization of church leaders' authority because it increases their dependence on factors that are beyond their control.

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Mauro Barisione

The fall of the government led by Silvio Berlusconi on 12 November

2011 followed the wave of unpopularity that had hit the prime minister

and leader of the Popolo della Libertà (PdL, People of Liberty) since

the beginning of the year. Decreasing confidence and satisfaction with

Berlusconi and his government had been evident in Italian public

opinion after the relative public support it enjoyed between 2008 and

2010. With a popularity rating below 30 percent, the prime minister

now lacked the necessary degree of consensus to legitimize and hold

on to the leadership of his government, as well as to make it credible

and effective on the international stage.

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Matteo Salvini's Northern League in 2016

Between Stasis and New Opportunities

Davide Vampa

Under Matteo Salvini’s leadership, the Northern League has sought to move away from its status of regionalist party to become a truly national (even nationalist) party, following the example of the National Front in France. For the new leader, the issues of federalism and devolution seem to play a less relevant role than opposition to the European Union and, more generally, to the so-called political establishment. This chapter shows that 2016 has been a transition year for the party. After two years of significant electoral expansion, the 2016 local elections seemed to mark a moment of stagnation. Salvini’s popularity ceased to grow and even started to decline. This posed some challenges to his right-wing populist project. Yet the concluding section of the chapter highlights the new political opportunities arising from Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election and from Renzi’s constitutional referendum defeat at the end of 2016.