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Virtue and Leadership

This entry first examines the nature of virtue, conceived as excellence of character. Then, turning to the topic of leadership, the entry reviews some common conceptions of leadership both in contemporary work and as it was viewed in the classical world. It concludes with a look at recent explorations of leadership in the behavioral sciences.

Virtue as Excellence of Character

Virtue is excellence of character, the possession of habits appropriate for a human being within a particular sociocultural context. Used as a synonym of “integrity,” virtue suggests wholeness and stability in a person. Virtue is a form of capital, moral capital, because it is a productive capacity that accumulates and develops through investments of time and effort. Virtue is unique because it perfects the human being as ...

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