Creation of the Leadership Academy

Posted on Monday, March 22, 2021

We are very pleased to announce the creation of the Leadership Academy at the University of Ottawa.

The Leadership Academy is a bold and imaginative campus-wide project emerging from a partnership between the Faculties of Law, Engineering and Social Sciences to offer leadership training to our community (students, staff and professors) — and beyond. Imagine leadership in the service of law and the humanities, research and social change! That’s exactly what the academy seeks to offer.

The Leadership Academy is led by an interdisciplinary leadership team made up of Vice-Dean of Research at the Civil Law Section Margarida Garcia (Law), who serves as the academy director; as well as Professors Richard Dubé (Social Sciences) and Marc Dubé (Engineering); Cintia Quiroga, Assistant Dean Research at the Faculty of Law; and Andrew Kuntze, Communications Strategist at the Faculty of Law.

The Academy aims to position the University as a hub for ontological leadership and to attract people from the region, across the country and around the world to contribute to its cutting-edge work on the ecology of effective and transformational leadership. The Academy’s approach to leadership is in line with a broader trend in higher education that values life-long learning and that emphasizes a re-examination of traditional pedagogical approaches and development programs in favour of equipping leaders with the tools they need to be adaptable to the uncertainties of an unstable future. The academy is built around three complementary pillars: a unique ontological leadership course that focuses on how to be a leader; an agenda of interdisciplinary research around the science of leadership; and coaching, mentoring services and transformational knowledge mobilization initiatives.

The ontological training course was first offered at the Faculty of Law by Professor Garcia in Fall 2019, at the graduate level. She and her team also offered the course to Licentiate in Law students in September 2020 and to JD students during the January 2021 term, to great success. The course is based on work developed by Werner Erhard (independent thinker), Michael C. Jensen (Jesse Isidor Straus Professor of Business Administration, Emeritus, Harvard Business School), Steve Zaffron (Founder and Head of Research and Development, Vanto Group) and Jeri Echeverria (Executive Vice Chancellor and Chief Academic Officer, California State University System (ret.)). If the approach is of interest, Werner Erhard and Michael Jensen (with Kari Granger) wrote the Chapter titled “Creating Leaders: An Ontological / Phenomenological Model” for the book The Handbook for Teaching Leadership: Knowing, Doing, and Being, edited by Scott Snook, Harvard Business School Senior Lecturer; Nitin Nohria, HBS Dean and George Baker Professor of Administration; and Rakesh Khurana, Dean of Harvard College.

This May: A leadership course for professors, staff and beyond

The Academy now wants to spread its wings and offer leadership training to all University of Ottawa members as well as to our continuing education partners (practitioners, the public service, civil society) or even as part of research projects.

It will offer training for professors, support staff and members of the general public in May. Collegial and interdisciplinary, the training will be an opportunity for group discovery and project development, both personal and professional.

While the May course will be offered in English, a French course will be offered at a later date. Courses adapted to students, businesspeople, the public service and the general public will also be offered in the coming months.

To inquire about future deliveries of the course please contact

Join us in congratulating our colleagues and wishing them much success in creating this promising Academy!

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