Cross-Cultural Generalizability of Paternalistic Leadership: An Expansion of Leader-Member Exchange Theory

Ekin K. Pellegrini, Terri A. Scandura, Vaidyanathan Jayaraman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

131 Scopus citations


Paternalism is an emerging concept with significant potential for international leadership research. Paternalistic leaders combine benevolence with authority. Paternalism is a prevalent leadership style in non-Western business organizations. In this article, the authors extend research on paternalism to the Western business context. They compare the attitudes of employees from the United States (N = 215) and India (N = 207) with respect to paternalistic leadership and its correlates. Paternalism had a significant positive effect on job satisfaction in India, but the relationship was not significant in the United States. In both cultural contexts, paternalistic leadership was positively related to leader-member exchange and organizational commitment. Results suggest paternalistic leadership may generalize across cultures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-420
Number of pages30
JournalGroup and Organization Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2010


  • India
  • leader-member exchange
  • organizational commitment
  • paternalistic leadership

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Applied Psychology


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