Traditional, hierarchical views of leadership have been under development and stress, increased complexities of the contemporary systems requires a process orientation. Leadership theory must transition to new perspectives that account for the complex adaptive needs of organizations. We advocate that leadership (as opposed to leaders) can be seen as a complex dynamic process that emerges through involved people and ideas. We introduce the concepts of complexity, situation and adaptive leadership. We show how these dynamics can be placed in practice through the introduction of the Rotterdam Central District case study; through which important insights about the nature of leadership and its outcomes in organizational fields are expressed.