The present dissertation tries to shed light on the phenomenon of empowering leadership. We aim to understand the antecedents of leader empowering behaviour. In doing so, we mean to remedy the stated lack of research on empowering leadership and on the effect of follower’s behaviour on leader’s behaviour. In this dissertation we will argue that follower’s behaviour can be expected to play an important role in explaining leader’s empowering behaviour. We report the findings of 4 laboratory studies and two field studies. As a first step in our reasoning we start by establishing trust as an antecedent of leader empowering behaviour and showing that leader’s characteristics moderate the influence of trust in the empowering process. We then investigate the influence of trust and epistemic motivation in the empowering process. We focused on two aspects of epistemic motivation: accountability and workload. We finally investigate the influence of trust and gender in the empowering process, emphasizing the mediating role of trust in the process.

conscientiousness, empowerment, epistemic motivation, gender, integrity, leadership, trust
Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior (jel L2), Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting (jel M), Business Administration: General (jel M10), Personnel Management (jel M12)
D.L. van Knippenberg (Daan)
Erasmus University Rotterdam , Erasmus Research Institute of Management
Rotterdam School of Management (RSM) Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) Dr. D. van Dierendonck Prof.dr. D. De Cremer Dr. M. Ryan Copromotor: Dr. S. Giessner
ERIM Ph.D. Series Research in Management
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Hakimi, N.A. (2010, January 8). Leader Empowering Behaviour: The Leader’s Perspective (No. EPS-2010-184-ORG). ERIM Ph.D. Series Research in Management. Erasmus Research Institute of Management. Retrieved from