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Health effects on leaders and co-workers of an art-based leadership development program
Karolinska Institutet.
Swedish Defence University, Department of Leadership and Management (ILM).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8274-6065
Stockholms universitet.
Karolinska Institutet.
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2011 (English)In: Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, ISSN 0033-3190, E-ISSN 1423-0348, Vol. 80, no 2, p. 78-87Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background:There are very few evaluations of the effectiveness of leadership development programs. The purpose of the study was to examine whether an art-based leadership program may have a more beneficial effect than a conventional one on leaders' and their corresponding subordinates' mental and biological stress. Methods: Participating leaders were randomized to 2 year-long leadership programs, 1 art-based and 1 conventional, with follow-up of the leaders and their subordinates at 12 and 18 months. The art-based program built on an experimental theatre form, a collage of literary text and music, followed by writing and discussions focused on existential and ethical problems. Results: After 18 months a pattern was clearly visible with advantage for the art-based group. In the art group (leaders and their subordinates together as well as for subordinates only) compared to the conventional group, there was a significant improvement of mental health, covert coping and performance-based self-esteem as well as significantly less winter/fall deterioration in the serum concentration of the regenerative/anabolic hormone dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate. Conclusions: Our findings indicate a more beneficial long-term health effect of the art-based intervention compared to a conventional approach. Positive results for both standardized questionnaires and biological parameters strengthened the findings. The study provides a rationale for further evaluation of the effectiveness of this alternative educational approach.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Basel: S. Karger, 2011. Vol. 80, no 2, p. 78-87
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Research subject
Ledarskap under påfrestande förhållanden
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URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-2133DOI: 10.1159/000321557ISI: 000287624500003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-2133DiVA, id: diva2:456379
Available from: 2011-11-14 Created: 2011-11-14 Last updated: 2018-06-28Bibliographically approved

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Larsson, Gerry

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