Skip to main content

Leadership & Sustainability in Europe: Where Now, What Next


We invite original papers that address aspects of (either/or) the theory and concepts, policy and practice of transnational leadership and governance in achieving sustainability in Europe.

Across both coterminous (land) and non-coterminous (sea/river/lake) national borders around the globe, important networking and relationship-building activity that aims to stimulate co-creativity as well as knowledge exchange and learning for mutual benefit has been a longstanding feature of sub-national city and regional development. However, the strategic and operational conditions for transnational partnering, cooperation and development at the sub-national scale (between cities and regions) are not immune from emerging challenges across economy and society and environment. After the recent pandemic crisis, governments all over the world are still responding to multiple social and economic changes and other challenging events, such as the Ukrainian-Russian conflict, high inflation, and soaring energy prices.


The ongoing energy transition towards more sustainable way of living and consuming was heavily affected by these events, which created a rupture in the continuation of transformation of energy systems into low (zero)-carbon regime, as well as providing a formidable platform for a break-through leap from the old, carbon-based system. In such a context, the role of leaders and leadership roles are crucial in view of designing, developing, and delivering policies and initiatives. The European Union is an example of a region where public funding has already made a difference in energy transition. The European Green Deal, the most ambitious project to decarbonise the EU’s economy, and the Next Generation EU fund, created by the European Commission, provide a strategic the new multiannual financial framework for 2021-2027, to support the post-pandemic recovery as well as the green transition of EU members. But how are these initiatives doing? Who is leading or trailing in the process? And are there gaps to fill or excellences to promote in the transition across members and institutions?


By organising and delivering four research seminars through 2023-2024 (Northumbria University, UK; ESSCA Ecole de Management, France; University of Prague, Czech Republic; and Tampere University, Finland), we are seeking to refresh inter-disciplinary discussion and advance debate around our understandings and explanations of the drivers, dynamics and outcomes of transnational leadership and governance in city and regional development settings.


Please send an abstract of 150-200 words to Ignazio Cabras and Thomas Hoerber


The seminar programme – and accepted abstracts – will be confirmed by mid-September 2023.


There are no registration fees for this workshop. Venue, lunch, and coffee breaks will be covered by ESSCA.

12 - 13 Oct 2023 Angers, France
Call for Papers open until 28 Aug 2023