Ambidextrous leadership: a meta-review applying static and dynamic multi-level perspectives

  • Julia MuellerEmail author
  • Birgit Renzl
  • Matthias Georg Will
Review Paper


The ability to achieve ambidexterity is seen as an important prerequisite for sustaining competitive advantages in organizations. One means to this end is ambidextrous leadership, which, by definition, attempts to achieve an improved corporate outcome on the macro level through leadership behavior on the micro-level. We present here a meta-review of the field of ambidextrous leadership research that indicates that the studies therein lack explicit definition of the levels analyzed within this multi-level concept as well as links between these levels. We first address the development of static and dynamic multi-level models in management and sociological research. Second, we describe the multi-level characteristics of the concept of ambidextrous leadership. Third, we use the static and dynamic multi-level models to analyze how current research reflects different levels of ambidextrous leadership and the links between these levels. Based on our meta-review, we identify new areas for future investigation and we develop an agenda for systematizing leadership research by explicitly considering the micro and macro level of an organization.


Ambidextrous leadership Multi-level concept Micro-level Macro level Meta-review Microfoundations 

JEL classification

D 23 D 91 L 21 M12 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julia Mueller
    • 1
    Email author
  • Birgit Renzl
    • 2
  • Matthias Georg Will
    • 3
  1. 1.Chair of Strategic ManagementMartin-Luther-University Halle-WittenbergHalle, SaaleGermany
  2. 2.Chair of Management and OrganizationUniversität StuttgartStuttgartGermany
  3. 3.Chair of Economic EthicsMartin-Luther-University Halle-WittenbergHalle, SaaleGermany

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