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Annual Leadership Institute to take place in May - leadership training for international NGO leaders seeking top NGO positions

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Preparing to make a leadership “leap”? 


Potential leaders focused on obtaining top transnational NGO leadership positions and executives building a succession plan for their organizations should carefully consider this critical question.

The Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs in the Maxwell School at Syracuse University is pleased to announce the second annual Transnational NGO Leadership Institute. This specialized “leap” program offers leadership training for up-and-coming international NGO leaders seeking top NGO positions. Global professionals from all regions, sectors and organizational sizes are invited to attend a cost-effective, intensive and interdisciplinary program May 21 - 25, 2012, in upstate New York. Institute attendees transitioning to top leadership positions will be provided with state of the art knowledge about NGO leadership, competency and talent development approaches, as well as strategic and analytical skills. The program will allow participants to examine their personal leadership style, expand specific competencies and roles, network with peers and experts, and benefit from practical applications tailored to their needs.

The Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs is the premier public affairs professional school in the United States (US News and World Report 2009 ranking of American public affairs graduate schools). Maxwell’s Executive Education Program was the first university-based program in the United States dedicated solely to the purpose of leadership training.

By participating in the Institute, you can expect to:


 Understand the effect of your leadership style.
The Institute provides an initial leadership assessment for each attendee. Participants will be able to gauge the impact of their leadership style when facing challenges and opportunities in their operating environment.

Expand and test specific leadership competencies.
Participants will examine five issues they are likely to encounter when making this leadership “leap.” Customized, proven and interactive learning approaches from Maxwell faculty and staff will be combined with the expertise of top NGO leaders who have made this leap, to look at the following topics: 


  • Leading in a Complex Context: the broader landscape of actors and issues; the impact of personal/individual leadership styles; management vs. leadership.
  • Organizational Governance: organizational change and design; board leadership
  • Collaboration and Crisis: communication, networks, partnerships, collaborative governance and leadership; leadership in crisis; leadership and stress
  • Politics and Power Relationships: symbolic leadership; advocacy
  • Strategic Decision-Making and Performance Management: resource planning, allocation and management. 


The five-day itinerary includes individual and group study, plenary sessions, group exercises and simulations, experiential creative activities and networking opportunities. Attendees will be encouraged to explore one of the beautiful lakeside villages located in the Finger Lakes region, during part of the program. Despite the rigorous schedule, participants will be given maximum time to network and build relationships with others facing similar challenges. 


Reaping actionable benefits.

As a companion to the five-day Transnational NGO Leadership Institute curriculum, Maxwell School researchers and executive education experts offer customized research for attendees, that provides them with insight into their specific leadership and organizational challenges. There will be opportunities before and after the Institute for participants to engage in collaborative conversations, information sharing, and networking via a dedicated website. 


What well-known NGO leaders say about the Leadership Institute:  

Our inaugural Transnational NGO Leadership Institute, offered in September, 2011, received excellent reviews: 


“Leaders of transnational NGOs are called upon to exercise influence on the key global issues of our times even as they manage large, complex organizations with accountability to a diverse range of stakeholders. I believe that this unique initiative from the Maxwell School of Public Affairs at Syracuse University fills a critical gap in ensuring aspiring TNGO leaders acquire the knowledge, skills and orientation necessary to take on those challenging responsibilities.” 


Ingrid Srinath, CIVICUS 




In our complex global environment, strong, diverse leadership is essential to the success of the international movement to address global poverty and advance social justice.  The Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University is doing a great service by supporting rising leaders and building the talent pool.” 


  Lindsay Coates, InterAction 



The Leadership Institute is guided by the following Steering Group members: 


 Lindsay Coates, Executive Vice President for Policy and Communications, InterAction 

 Susan Hayes, CEO, ReSurge International, and Board Member, InterAction 

 Sherine Jayawickrama, Manager, Development and Humanitarian Relief NGOs, Hauser Center for Non Profits, Harvard University 

 Mark Sidel, Professor of Law, University of Iowa and President, International Society for Third Sector Research (ISTR) 

 Ramesh Singh, former CEO, ActionAid and Visiting Fellow, Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations, Harvard University 

 Ingrid Srinath, Secretary General, CIVICUS 

 Adam Weinberg, President/CEO, World Learning 


Contact information 


Please join us! Open registration for the second annual Transnational NGO Leadership Institute begins on December 12, 2011. Please visit our dedicated Institute website (, where information on program content, training fees, opportunities for funding support, and testimonials from past participants are available. Please contact Tosca Bruno-van Vijfeijken, Director for Education and Practitioner Engagement, Transnational NGO Initiative, or the Leadership Institute team, Maxwell School at Syracuse University at or  +1 (315) 443-5073 for more information.  


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