Taking research to the next level

Third Floor Research is an international research initiative that fosters innovation in the exercise and development of leadership in a rapidly changing world.

At Third Floor Research,
we are asking the question: What kind of leadership does it take to tackle challenges in an increasingly changing, complex and unpredictable world?


About Third Floor Research


Third Floor Research is an applied research partnership between the Kansas Leadership Center and Kansas State University’s Staley School of Leadership Studies. Our research evaluates leadership training and contributes to a global understanding of leadership, adaptation and change management. Findings address individual development, organizational impact, and community capacity. Third Floor Research was designed by the Kansas Leadership Center with researchers and practitioners from the Harvard Kennedy School, Chile, Israel and the states of Colorado, Kansas and Wisconsin.


Videos on our recent research findings


Research Projects

Kansas Beats the Virus: Engaging Local Communities to Drive Local Change

Covering the second phase of the Kansas Beats the Virus initiative, this report investigates how KBTV 2021 helped alleviate the effects of the pandemic by engaging local communities to exercise leadership and achieve public health and civic engagement outcomes.

Kansas Beats the Virus - What We Learned From Our Mass Civic Action Campaign

This report details the grassroots efforts and networks mobilized in response to the Kansas Leadership Center’s call to action to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Kansas communities.

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The Impact of expanding leadership development

Externally funded research by ORS Impact in Seattle found that organizations that saturate their workforce with KLC leadership development report making more progress on their toughest challenges.

Leadership development and employee engagement in nonprofits

This research project focuses on the leadership development trainings of a large non-profit organization. This study seeks to better understand the influence of a leadership development program on leadership behaviors, leadership efficacy, leadership mindset, and workplace engagement in a nonprofit context.

Developing leadership capacities in high-tech industry

This research project focuses on the leadership development trainings of a global corporation in the high-tech industry. The research aims to identify what has been learned from participants about exercising leadership and shifts in how employees define and address challenges in their organization.

Impact of community leadership programs on work and community engagement

This research project focuses on the leadership development trainings of community leadership programs. This study seeks to better understand the leadership and civic outcomes of community leadership programs.

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Weathering the Storm: Leadership Lessons from a Global Financial Crisis

This research project reviewed the literature about how businesses adapted during the 2007-2008 global financial crisis to identify characteristics and behaviors resulting in long-term success.

Robust leadership capacity of Latinos in Kansas

This research project focuses on studying the perspectives of Latinos living in Kansas about leadership and leading in the United States. This research will study the identities, prototypes, values, and civic engagement, among others, of Latinos living in a US community.

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