Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Leadership (MAL)




Comic strips provide a graphic glimpse into the collective consciousness of a culture and its time in history. Scott Adams' popular Dilbert comic strip provides not only humor to its large audience but a social commentary on today's corporate work culture. Through the imaginative world of Dilbert, Scott Adams exposes the contradictory underlying values, attitudes and feelings of today's corporate work culture and its leadership. This paper compares the leadership themes portrayed in the Dilbert comic strip to the Augsburg Leadership Development model. One hundred Dilbert comic strips were analyzed, categorized and compared to the key leadership attributes and values of the model: ethical, creative, risk assumptive, decisive, communicative and culturally aware. In the discussion, Dilbert satire is analyzed from a mass media perspective in order to examine its social and psychological influence on today's work culture.


SC 11.MAL.2001.McCollum.SL