Defining the Local Leadership Profile: What is the Best Mayor for Lithuanian Citizens?
Keywords: democratic participation, self-governance, civic participation, local leadership, political capital, mayor
AbstractThe article focuses on the changes in local political leadership and political identity emphasizing different dimensions of the social and political capital of the municipality mayor. The main objective is to reveal how different societal groups perceive the political, administrative and community experience of the mayor determining the complex profiles of local political leadership and role in local communities. The theoretical discussion is complemented with the results of the representative public opinion survey of Lithuanian inhabitants performed in February–March 2016. The empirical results reveal different perceptions of the mayor image which is more based on the ‘managerial’ leadership style rather than considering him as a politician. The relationships with the local community are perceived as less significant which also reveals the weak identification within local issues and fragmented social interactions with a variety of interest groups. The results contribute to the discussion on different value profiles and patterns of residents towards collective action and local political identity.