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Referent power is individual power based on a high level of identification with, admiration of, or respect for the powerholder.

Referent power is one of the Five Bases of Social Power, as defined by Bertram Raven and his colleagues1 in 1959.


  • 1French, J., & Raven, B. The bases of social power. Studies in social power (1959).
  • Taylor, Peplau, & Sears (2006). Social Psychology (12th ed.). Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education, Inc. ISBN 0-13-193281-0

French and Raven's 5 Forms of Power Coercive; Reward, Legitimate; Referent, Expert

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