The MIG for Public Leadership provides a forum for those who study or help lead non-profit, social, civic,
political, and governmental institutions. These institutions are typically characterized by their primary
emphasis on serving the greater good rather than economic gain. The dialogue sponsored by the Public
Leadership MIG confronts the challenges posed in the public arena and examines potential leadership
strategies and solutions.
Director, Science & Technology Policy Fellowships, AAAS
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Cynthia Robinson directs the AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowships, administering programs and activities for more than 250 Congressional and Executive Branch Fellows annually, with the aim to foster evidence-based federal policy. This is accomplished by engaging scientists and engineers from a broad range of disciplines, backgrounds and career stages to directly contribute knowledge and analytical skills to support well-informed federal policies, regulations and programs; to learn first-hand about policymaking and implementation in the federal government; and to build leadership capacity for a strong S&T enterprise that benefits society. With a team of 20 staff and an annual budget of more than $16 million, Cynthia oversees strategic planning and policy; program development and evaluation; professional education activities; and communications, marketing, and stakeholder relations.
Prior to joining AAAS in 2004, Cynthia worked for seven years directing fellowships for scientists and engineers focusing on the environment and conservation, with the Pew Fellows Program in Marine Conservation, and the Aldo Leopold Leadership Program. She has more than 20 years of experience in program management, communications, and non-profit administration. Her early career was in public relations and marketing in the fields of community development, financial services, and healthcare. She also has worked in the education for sustainability realm, and spent three years in international development with the Peace Corps in Thailand and The Gambia, focusing on environmental education and youth enrichment programs.
Cynthia holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Boston University, and a master's degree in urban and environmental policy from Tufts University, with a concentration in international environmental policy and sustainable development. She is a recipient of a UNEP Fellowship in International Environmental Management, and a Switzer Foundation Environmental Fellowship. Cynthia has held numerous volunteer leadership positions. She was a trustee of the Robert and Patricia Switzer Foundation from 1999 to 2007, including three years as board chair; and from 1994 to 2005 she served in various governance positions with the Sea Education Association, including six years as a trustee. She has served in her local community on the Green Plan Steering Committee for the town of Cheverly, MD, as chair of the Education & Outreach Working Group. Cynthia is a member of the Association of Women in Science; and the International Leadership Association, where she is chair-elect of the Public Leadership member interest group.
Director, Leiden Leadership Centre & Centre for Professional Learning,
Leiden University Campus Den Haag
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is strongly committed to leadership for the public good and is an active member of the ILA since 2005. At the moment she is heading the Leiden Leadership Centre & Centre for Professional Learning at University Leiden - Campus The Hague. With Professor Keith Grint and Anne Murphy, she has set up the Learning Leadership Lab, an international action research initiative to better understand the challenges leaders in the public domain are facing and how to address these. She seeks and applies new insights with regards to the learning of public leadership in leadership education and programmes for professionals.
She holds a Master's Degree in Public Administration and started her career working for the Association of Netherlands Municipalities being responsible for a wide variety of international cooperation projects in Latin-America and Africa. She has built the Centre for Public Leadership at the Dutch Institute for Public Administration and published on public leadership, European leadership and political-bureaucratic relations. Her current areas of interest include contextual leadership, emergent complexity and values-based leadership. She volunteered in a Primary School Advisory Board (3 years) and in the Board of a Modern Dance Foundation (5 years). She is married and the proud mother of two adolescents.
Immediate Past Chair
Professor, University of Stellenbosch/Leiden University
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Erwin Schwella is currently the Professor of Public Leadership at the School of Public Leadership at Stellenbosch University, South Africa and a Professorial Fellow at the Leiden Leadership Centre of Leiden University, the Netherlands. Erwin is also a member of the Board of Overseers of the Center for Public Leadership in the Hague, the Netherlands, a Director of the Council of Health Service Accreditation of Southern Africa, a Director of the Center for Executive Leadership in Government, Rutgers University, United States of America and a member of the Statutory Training and Development Board of the Namibian Institute of Public Administration and Management.
Erwin Schwella has been and still is a consultant and advisor to ministers and other executive office holders at all spheres of government in the democratic South Africa and in Southern Africa. He has travelled extensively and was a visiting academic at many prominent European and United States Universities. He is a leadership and governance trainer who has trained senior members of the South African liberation movements in preparation for their roles in government as well as political and government leaders in the democratic South Africa and abroad.
He is a National Research Foundation rated researcher in South Africa and has authored and co-authored more than 40 academic publications in the fields of governance, leadership, organization development and public management. He serves and has served on the editorial boards of a number of national and international academic journals.
The Member Engagement Team works to create, coordinate, and implement experiences throughout the year that serve and involve Public Leadership MIG members fostering active engagement and connection in between conferences.
The Conference Creative Team is responsible for creating innovative and exciting programming for the Public Leadership community at the ILA Annual Global Conferences.
ILA members who affiliate with a MIG receive occasional emails of interest from their MIG leaders including volunteer openings, updates on MIG initiatives, and opportunities to provide feedback.
To affiliate: Login to the Member Area of the ILA Website and follow the link to "My Profile. " Click edit, select the Communities with which you wish to affiliate, and click "save".
Contact ILA's Membership Team at firstname.lastname@example.org with any general questions about ILA's member communities.