Governing By Committee

Collegial Leadership in Advanced Societies

By Thomas A. Baylis

Series: SUNY series in Leadership Studies
Paperback : 9780887069451, 236 pages, May 1989
Hardcover : 9780887069444, 236 pages, May 1989

Alternative formats available from:


Governing by Committee is the first book-length study to examine decision-making among political executives. It examines sixteen advanced Western and Communist states and shows that collegial and semi-collegial patterns are far more common than is generally assumed.

Contrary to the assertions of Max Weber, Baylis contends that modern bureaucracy, with its growing role in policy-making and its intimate association with neocorporatist forms of interest group representation, offers a particularly congenial setting for collegial leadership.

A timely study, Governing by Committee opens a new dimension in the comparative study of political executives. But it also complements and contributes to the existing literature on political leadership, decision-making, consociationalism, and neocorporatism. It belongs as well to the still relatively small number of works comparing the politics of advanced Western and Communist states.

Thomas A. Baylis is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Texas at San Antonio.


"The idea is original, the conclusion is theoretically significant, the author is extraordinarily erudite, the style is compelling. " — Alfred G. Meyer, University of Michigan

"The most original and carefully documented aspect of this work is its demonstration of the dynamic interaction between monocratic and collegial leadership. Bayliss forces us to face up to the realities behind the often all to glittering facade of monocratic/great man leadership. " — Alfred Diamant, Indiana University