Singapore University of Social Sciences

Social Sector Leadership

Social Sector Leadership (NPM504)


NPM504 Social Sector Leadership will examine the basis, tenets and unique characteristics of leadership in the social sector in both global and local contexts. Students will be required to critique and discuss the various leadership models applied across the various social service industries. The course features a study of Asian Social Heroes who have made a significant impact by way of their leadership as they engage critical and challenging social issues. There is also a concerted effort made to understand leadership in a Singaporean context. The course will explore the ethos of social leadership in terms of alignment with organisational strategy and mission/vision as well as studying examples that have contributed to the evolution of good leadership practice in the third sector. It will also explore the frameworks and values that shape leadership including managing team dynamics, personal values and organisational goals. The course is designed to promote critical thinking about current leadership styles in the working world and to illicit ideas for positive social change in the social sector.

Level: 5
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY JULY


  • Understanding Leadership in the Social Context
  • Values-based Social Leadership
  • Institutional Dynamics
  • Society, Community & Social Leadership
  • Collaboration Models
  • Organisational Ownership
  • Leadership Dysfunctions
  • Six Challenges of Adaptive Leadership
  • Interventions and Empowerment models
  • Social Inclusivity
  • Self-Efficacy in Leadership
  • Reflective Practice

Learning Outcome

  • Critique basic concepts and characteristics of leadership in relation to the social sector.
  • Analyse social sector values, principles, ethics and thought leadership that shape leadership patterns and influence behaviour of senior management.
  • Appraise course concepts to deepen understanding of management principles and concepts.
  • Critique leadership assumptions and evaluate decision-making patterns.
  • Contrast the different types of leadership by balancing strategy and missions with practices in social service contexts.
  • Formulate strategies using tools and structures to implement adaptive change.
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