Sanderijn Cels is a practice-oriented academic who specializes in public leadership, social innovation, and strategic management. A historian by training, her research and teaching focus on how change agents deal with legacy policies and the status quo as they navigate multi-stakeholder environments to improve social outcomes and promote historical and other forms of justice.
Cels has published in peer-reviewed journals, including The Leadership Quarterly and Political Psychology. She is first author of Agents of Change: Strategies and Tactics for Social Innovation (Brookings Institution Press, 2012) and seven other books. She has a Master-degree in history (with honors) from Leiden University (NL), and a Ph.D. in Social Sciences (no corrections) from Loughborough University (UK).
A specialist in discussion-based and participant-centered learning, Cels has authored or co-authored more than 40 teaching cases and teaches case-teaching and -writing workshops for academics and practitioners. She also teaches in several executive education programs at HKS and around the world, including Creating Collaborative Solutions and Senior Executives in State and Local Government. At the Harvard Extension School she has taught the successful course Becoming an Agent of Change.
Cels is currently finishing her new book, entitled Reckoning with History: Collective Memory, Public Leadership and the Politics of Remembrance, which examines how public leaders deal with the strategic challenges of addressing historic wrongs. She is developing a course on the same subject.