Leadership Dynamics in Foreign Interventions: Russia and France in Mali 2012-2022


  • Amelia Foster King's College London's African Leadership Centre




Foreign intervention, Mali, Russia in Africa, Identity Leadership


This study examines the leadership dynamics within foreign intervention, utilising the identity leadership framework set out in The New Psychology of Leadership (Haslam, Reicher, Platow, 2020). Utilising the case study of Russia and France’s interventions in Mali, the work tests the assumptions of the framework to ascertain its applicability in large-scale, distant settings, finding that identity leadership is feasible in foreign intervention, but the approach is not comprehensive in its explanation of intervenor successes and failures. The approach taken was a desk-based, qualitative, comparative case study research. The work advances understanding of the nature of the exchange of influence between foreign intervenors and recipient states and maintains a recipient perspective throughout. The study has implications for the validity of identity leadership theory outside of traditional leadership, and approaches to studying foreign intervention. The work suggests that studying a broader conceptualisation of foreign intervention from a recipient perspective provides a richer understanding of leadership dynamics.

Author Biography

Amelia Foster, King's College London's African Leadership Centre

Amelia Foster holds a Global Leadership and Peacebuilding MSc from King's College London's African Leadership Centre, and a Politics and International Relations BSc from the University of Bristol. She has experience working in the UK civil service and her research focuses on security and foreign interventionism in Africa (particularly the Sahel region).




How to Cite

Foster, A. (2022). Leadership Dynamics in Foreign Interventions: Russia and France in Mali 2012-2022. Leadership and Developing Societies, 7(1), 1–52. https://doi.org/10.47697/lds.35360010