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Leadership science, also known as the study of leadership or leadership research, is a multidisciplinary field that focuses on understanding and explaining the dynamics of leadership. It involves the systematic study of leadership behaviors, traits, styles and the impact of leaders on individuals, groups and organizations. Leadership is a key area of inquiry across multiple social science disciplines.

The Center for Leadership Science (CLS) takes an interdisciplinary approach to researching and teaching leadership, and addresses the barriers and challenges that emerging leaders face in rising to leadership positions. Our strategic priority is to fundamentally redefine leadership and, in turn, its application across countless leader development and training programs in business and society. CLS houses and disseminates leadership research, teaching and impact to the Charlotte community via undergraduate, graduate and UNC Charlotte community outreach. 

CLS leverages open, robust and replicable science to:

  • Redefine societal meanings of leadership in an inclusive manner
  • Train leader behaviors that are effective regardless of background
  • Improve systems within organizations to aid all stakeholders.


To use scientific knowledge to help leaders serve their stakeholders in the pursuit of society’s grand challenges.


A world in which leadership science informs and educates the scientific and business communities in understanding and facilitating leadership.