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Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)

Sudhanshu Palsule is an award-winning educator, leadership philosopher, CEO advisor, author, and speaker. He is regarded as one of the leading thinkers in the fields of Transformative Leadership and Leading in Complexity. Author of several books, his latest book, “Rehumanizing Leadership” was published in 2020. 



Sudhanshu is a fellow at Cambridge University’s Institute for Sustainability Leadership. He is also an Educator and Academic Director at Duke CE (part of Duke University, USA).  

Sudhanshu’s work is based on the premise that the increasingly complex challenges of the 21st century cannot be addressed by an industrial age mindset that was trained for linearity. To grasp the nature of an interconnected and interdependent reality, we must bring about a radical change in the way we think, and in how we engage with the world.  

Sudhanshu distinguishes leadership from what leaders do. His view is that leadership is a emergent system made up of multiple interdependent factors, in which individual leaders can have a powerful influence through their conversations, actions, and behaviors. Most of our 20th century leadership theories were suited for the “received word” handed down through hierarchies, top-down power, and communication structures, and not for a transparent, networked world. 

He brings together the new research emerging from neurology, psychology, and biology, with his own exploration of human thinking and behavior over more than thirty-five years. Originally trained as a quantum physicist, Sudhanshu’s career began with teaching physics and ecology, and meandered through the private sector, working as a Senior Advisor to the United Nations, partnering in a consultancy, and back into academia as a leadership educator.  

He has consulted and run leadership workshops with several clients such as Unilever, Roche, Avon, Sanofi, NHS, Astra Zeneca, Novartis, United Business Media, MetLife, Nokia, HSBC, BNP Paribas, Astellas, Barclays, Rio Tinto, Petronas, Gerdau, Rolls Royce, the World Bank and the U.N.  

Sudhanshu’s books include “Rehumanizing Leadership” (2020); “The Social Leader” (2014); “Personal Growth (2010); “From Management Education to Civic Reconstruction: The Emerging Ecology of Organizations” (2005); “Managing in Four Worlds” (1999); “Science, Technology and Social Change (1983). He is currently working on two new books.  

Sudhanshu is very much a global citizen and has lived and worked in four continents. He currently spends his time between Mumbai, London and Cambridge.  

Sudhanshu Palsule
Fellow of the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership