Bilkent IR Talks, Spring 2022 - 11

Prof. Juliet Kaarbo

School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh , Scotland

Title: “Breaking Bad: How Political Leaders’ Personalities Change Over Time”

Date & Time: 21 June 2022, 12:30
Place: Room A130

Abstract: In this talk, Professor Kaarbo will examine how leaders’ personality traits change over time and with what policy and political effects. The focus will be on how leaders become more authoritarian, overconfident, and more mistake-prone; how, when, and why do leaders ‘break bad’? There is very little work on how leaders’ personalities develop and how they interact with changing constraints and opportunities. Temporal evolution of leaders is an important topic given the long tenure of many political leaders and the influence these leaders have over policies, including foreign policies. This presentation draws on a wide range of prior scholarship -- on age, experience, learning, and the psychological effects of power – in order to develop expectations about leader personality change. The presentation will also discuss how the framework for this project can be applied to Vladimir Putin and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.