By: Mallory Monaco Caterine

The Ancient Leadership collection within SAGE Business Cases explores leadership in Classical history, mythology, philosophy, and material culture in a way that is engaging and useful for business students and instructors at the undergraduate and graduate level. This project is a chance for those of us who work in the ancient world to experiment with a very mainstream method of leadership pedagogy and hopefully to teach a wider audience about the central importance of the humanities for leadership study and training. We expect that each of the case studies will illustrate the ways in which the humanities makes important–if not unique–contributions to the study of leadership and the training of leaders:

  1. by improving emotional intelligence (e.g., empathy, perspective-taking, self-awareness),
  2. by improving ethical decision-making,
  3. by helping leaders to use language/metaphors to understand, instruct, and inspire, and
  4. by helping leaders think more critically and independently about all problems of leadership.

The theme for 2021 is “Transitions of Power”. The moment when an individual or group hands power over to another is perhaps the most fraught and vulnerable event in a community or organization’s life, but also one that is full of potential and opportunity. Transitions of power can confirm the stability of a community, or they can provide an existential threat. The personalities of leaders and their constituents, the institutions of the community, and the circumstances of the transition are all variables in determining whether a transition of power will be uneventful or chaotic. The cultures of the ancient Mediterranean basin (not merely limited to Greece and Rome, but also Persia, Phoenicia, Lydia, Egypt, Etruria, etc.) provide ample evidence for diverse approaches to and outcomes of transitions of power, in literary, documentary, and material sources. For suggested questions about transitions of power which may be treated in these cases, as well as links to case guidelines and templates, see the SBC call for submissions here.

Case proposals are due by January 31, 2020. Each case proposal submission will consist of a case abstract and a set of proposed learning outcomes. The abstract (no more than 200 words) should provide a succinct overview of your case, giving SBC users a quick snapshot to assess your case’s relevance to their classroom or research needs. It should also highlight the relevant decision point of your case. The learning outcomes should enumerate the specific learning goals of the case, highlighting what students should take away from the case, and emphasizing the key lessons the material intends to impart. They should be formatted as a bulleted list, with no more than six individual learning outcomes. Case proposals can be submitted via this form.

Authors will be notified of proposal decisions by February 29, 2019. An online session for accepted authors will be held in March to discuss writing effective business cases and field authors’ questions about the publication process; this will be scheduled at a time to be accessible to the greatest number of participants. Authors are expected to submit their case narratives (1000-5000 words), along with companion teaching notes, by June 1, 2020, for review by the series editor and the SBC developmental editors. Authors will be compensated $500 by SAGE when their case materials are accepted for publication.

For a sample case from the “Becoming a Leader” series, see here.

Please contact Mallory Monaco Caterine ( with any questions.


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