Evolving Leadership for a Sustainable Future: A Path to Collective Wellbeing

A Volume in the International Leadership Association series Building Leadership Bridges
By S. Steffen, with S. Rappaport and S. Trevenna (Eds.) Forthcoming. Emerald Group Publishing

Call for Chapter Proposals Deadline: May 1, 2017

In these uncertain times of unprecedented environmental, economic, social, and political change, the world needs hopeful and helpful guidance on how to chart a future of global sustainability and collective wellbeing. Beyond asking why the changes are happening to us, we have the opportunity to ask why they are happening for us. In other words, how are we being compelled to evolve our leadership, and who are we being called to become?

History was made when world leaders stepped up and pledged unifying commitments to secure a sustainable future "where all life can thrive" by adopting the United Nations' Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Designed by the collective intelligence and diverse inputs from grassroots to government, the 2030 Agenda is a brilliant plan that emboldens local to global engagement and supports aligned momentum throughout the world. Now, we the people ― the world's individuals, organizations, and communities that have been championing the shared vision of a sustainable future ― need access to the best leadership guidance available to build on the successes of past efforts and advance breakthrough progress.

In response, the forthcoming edited volume Evolving Leadership for a Sustainable Future: A Path to Collective Wellbeing will provide that guidance in the form of a useful resource designed to heighten leadership effectiveness through access to vanguard theory and practice. Divided into (1) local, (2) regional or national, and (3) international sections, the collection will highlight stories and insights from leadership practitioners and scholars around the world and offer invaluable lessons, models, and practices upon which to draw. Case and place-based chapters will bridge theory and practice to empower diverse actors around the world.

Humanity is in an urgent yet hopeful time, faced with the opportunity to lead the transformation of our world by translating our vision of what we know is possible into a global reality. It is evident, as articulated in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, that, "The future of humanity and of our planet lies in our hands.… It will be for all of us to ensure that the journey is successful and its gains irreversible."

We hope that you will join us in fulfilling the potential and promise of a world that works for all. If you are interested in contributing to this high-impact volume, please submit by May 1st a brief concept paragraph between 250 and 500 words (submission details below) that explains how your chapter will help answer the guiding question:

How do we bring out the best of our diverse humanity and evolve our leadership to ensure a sustainable future?

In addition to your paragraph, please briefly answer the following questions in bulleted list format:

  1. Title: What is your draft chapter title?
  2. Approach: What case studies, research, and/or viewpoints do you intend to highlight to help answer the guiding question about how to bring out the best of our diverse humanity and evolve our leadership to ensure a sustainable future? And in which section (local, national/regional, global) do you see your chapter best fitting?
  3. SDGs: Which Sustainable Development Goal(s), which include the Paris Climate Change Treaty targets, do you see your chapter best demonstrating or serving? The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is available online at https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/post2015/transformingourworld.
  4. Findings: Briefly identify the key insights or take-aways that you envision would be of highest benefit to all readers.
  5. Implications and applications: Briefly describe those whose circumstances or leadership would most benefit from the leadership practice and theory presented in your chapter.
  6. Keywords: List up to 6 keywords and/or key phrases that reflect the main topic(s) that your chapter will address. For example: Pacific Islands, refugee crisis, social entrepreneurship, regenerative agriculture, restorative leadership, critical leadership studies.

Below are a variety of reflective prompts that may help you conceptualize your chapter. It is not required to respond directly to any of these.

Identifying Your Insights:

Applying Your Insights

Shanah Trevenna, Shana Rappaport, Seana Steffen (L-R)Please send your submission by May 1st to Seana@restorative-leadership.org, with a copy to dderuyver@ila-net.org. All proposals will be reviewed by June 1st, and selected chapters of up to 6,000 words will be due by November 15th, 2017.

Thank you for your inspired engagement in this work, and for your interest in helping to accomplish humanity's ultimate challenge and opportunity ― charting a sustainable future of collective wellbeing.


Seana SteffenSeana Lowe Steffen, PhD, is founder and CEO of the Restorative Leadership Institute (RLI), an award-winning certified B Corp. Grassroots to globally, Seana is dedicated to advancing leadership for collective wellbeing with her 25 years of experience in leadership and organizational development. Her research and work spans countries and continents, heads of state and multinational enterprise, including The Sustainability Consortium, National Civilian Community Corps, Hewlett Packard, and the Carter Center. Seana's awards include ETown National Public Radio's "E-chievement Award" and Mortar Board's Outstanding Professor. She chairs the World Pulse Global Advisory Network and is a certified UN Climate Change Trainer.

Shana Rappaport Shana Rappaport has worked actively for over a decade as a community organizer and cross-industry convener to advance sustainability solutions. Through her current work with GreenBiz as Director of Engagement for VERGE, Shana is scaling the leading global event series focused on accelerating the clean economy. Shana previously served as Director of Education for Bioneers, and as an instrumental community leader during her time as an undergraduate and graduate student at USC. She is on the Board of Advisors for Project Drawdown; a Senior Advisor to the Buckminster Fuller Institute's Global Challenge; and a trained leader of the Climate Reality Project.

Shanah Trevenna With degrees in mechanical engineering, urban planning, enterprise management, and political science Dr. Shanah Trevenna is a leadership coach and speaks and consults globally on creating a sustainable global economy. Her research focuses on B Corps and frameworks for evolving thriving, sustainable businesses and she owns and consults for many diverse social enterprises. Shanah developed multiple programs and courses for the University of Hawaii earning her a College Educators' International Award. She was named Hawaii's 2015 Social Impact Entrepreneur of the Year for founding Impact Hub Honolulu and helped found Hawaii's Associations for green business, renewable energy, and impact investing.